Charles Braithwaite

Pomegranates, Persimmons, and Peace


Revolution interrupts peace, leads to peace.

Why is there war ??? . . . Why is there peace ???

Born in peace, know peace, embrace peace.

Born in war, no peace, embrace violence.

Violence is the language of the inarticulate.

Compassion is the language of the enlightened.

Education teaches communication.

Communication is the pathway to peace.


I remember walking in the backyard garden with my grandfather when I was a little boy, maybe eight years old.  I enjoyed walking back there with him and seeing the chickens, fruit trees, and rows of onions and cabbage. We stopped in front of two trees, a pomegranate and a persimmon.

“Chuckie, look at those trees,” Grandpa said. “I’ve planted them a little too close together. Their branches and leaves touch and weave together a bit. But you know, they seem to be able to live together fine. They make good fruit and they don’t hurt each other.”

He thought for a second, as I marveled at how they’d grown together, then said, “If only human beings could get along that way. You know, these two trees seem to be able to live in peace and harmony. If only we humans had the same quality of kindness.”

Peace is an elusive creature. She hides in the shadows, very hard to find. But sometimes, she pops into the sunlight with a sparkle and a shine. As you reach out to embrace her, she slips away. She is gone.

The narrative of the history of peace is very short. Has there ever been a day, when humankind enjoyed peace everywhere? Sadly, no, for our history has been punctuated with unending conflict, greed, territorialism, and power-mongering. Global peace has eluded mankind because as one conflict is resolved, another exists independently of the first.

Today, we can only hope for the voice of peace to be heard over the din of nationalism, ideology, religion, and prejudice. If there is to be lasting peace, we will find its foundation in enlightenment, education, and communication.

After many years in science and industry, Charles Braithwaite gave up his suit and tie for a Hawaiian shirt and jeans. Now he writes . . . Plays, poetry, fiction. So many ideas, so little time. His plays, “My Three Wives” and “Colonoscopy”, were finalists in the ShowOff! Playwriting Festivals in 2017 and 2018, staged by the Camino Real Playhouse, San Juan Capistrano, CA. His poetry has appeared in the Voices on the Wind Poetry Journal, and he has completed his first novel, Sitting in the Sun.



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