Page:The War and the Future (Masefield, 1918).djvu/57

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The War and the Future

life, with its comfortable loves and hatreds, are gone. We have to remake our lives, forget our old hatreds and learn new ones, and ask ourselves the question: "What kind of a new world am I going to help make?"

This war came gradually to you. You were, as we were, not expecting war, seeing the threat and the preparation of war, but believing, just as we believed, that commonsense, or ordinary human sense, and one-thousandth part of goodwill in human intercourse would make war impossible. War to you, as to us, seemed to be out of date in a century which cut the Panama Canal and discovered Radium and the wireless telegraph. But it came none the less, and all our ten millions of adults had suddenly to put by their old lives and take on new and dangerous and terrible lives. Now the same thing has happened to you.

When the threat of this war came suddenly to Europe we had nothing to gain by war, except our own soul. That is a big exception. Short of that, we risked everything to keep the peace, as our friends complained, and our enemies agreed.

When the war came to us, and the enemy Ambassador was leaving England, a friend of