Page:The War and the Future (Masefield, 1918).djvu/108

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The War and the Future

pidity, is an overwhelming monster which eats them wholesale.

Not long ago, I was talking to an American about this ending of war by internationalism. He said: "If two great peoples would agree to it, it could be done; and if your country and mine would agree to it, it would be done." Don't think me a dreamer, an idealist, a pacifist. I am for the common man and woman, whose tears and blood pay for war. And in that matter of payment, the poor German pays, equally with the poor Belgian. He pays with all he has. On the battlefields of this war I have seen the men who paid. I have seen enemy dead, and Turk dead, and French dead, and English dead, and every dead man meant some woman with a broken heart.

Those men had no quarrel with each other. They lie there in the mud, because man, who has conquered the black death and typhus and smallpox, and the yellow fever, has not conquered the war fever. And the war fever takes him in the blood and in the soul and kills him by the hundred thousand.

When the blessed bells ring for peace, this year or next year, in man's time if not in ours,