Peace is Red

Today at Poets United, the Midweek Motif is “Colors”.  How do colors affect you? What colors do you associate with seasons, foods, moods, actions?   Come and find out the thoughts of others on Colors.  I took my cue from Mary who earlier this week wrote about peace and what peace is not.  I decided to give a new slant to the color Red.    dVerse Open Link:

copyright kanzensakura

What Color is Peace?
Peace comes in many colors – like the rainbow,
Like us humans or animals or flowers.
You may not think so, but red is a color of peace –
a tomato plucked from the bounty of a backyard garden
and handed over the short fence to the neighbor next door.
The red of holly berries nestled among dark green clusters
of leaves hidden deep in the forest, with white snow
softly falling or the cardinal perched on the branch
finding a source of food and shelter.
The red of maple leaves preparing for winter sleep
Or the red of a rose given to a beloved.
Long blondeblackbrownred braids tied at the ends
with perky red bows.
Red is the color of peace – of units of blood donated
for someone about to undergo life saving surgery
or the child with cancer
or the service or emergency person needing
emergency treatment.
The wild apples are red and they hang down far enough
a herd of deer can satisfy their hunger.
Red are the azaleas planted by my father years ago
that continue to bloom after all this time.
Strawberries from our garden were rich and red and sweet.
Red is my generations old flowering quince
blooming in a freezing snow.
The heart your child drew and the words “I Love You”
hangs with pride on your refrigerator door
photographed and posted on Facebook so everyone would know
– drawn with a bright red crayon.
Peace is what we make it and it is colored by our souls
our hearts our words and actions.
If our words do not speak of peace and hope
how can we be peace and hope to a world
sadly in need of both?
You may not think so, but red is a color of peace.

copyright kanzensakura

copyright kanzensakura




48 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Sanaa Rizvi
    Dec 09, 2015 @ 15:33:03

    Peace is what we make it and it is colored by our souls
    And our hearts and our words and actions.

    This is absolutely stunning Toni! No doubt red is the color with peace as it comes straight from the heart 😀 Beautifully penned.

    Lots of love,


  2. Mary
    Dec 09, 2015 @ 16:14:53

    Ha – your poem takes the opposite perspective of mine on the color red. Definitely red is the color of hearts, and red the color of units of blood for surgery. Peace is what we make it to be…that is true. I will grant you that! Smiles.


  3. Susan
    Dec 09, 2015 @ 17:32:46

    Your poem and Mary’s should be printed side by side as they show such a different emphasis. We clearly need red in all of these nutritious and nurturing ways, and yet we need it where it belongs–not spilled. We need it in life, not in death.


    • kanzensakura
      Dec 09, 2015 @ 17:37:56

      Exactly. Which is why I thought this emphasis was needed. We hear so much lately about what is bad or horrible. I was starting to get negativity overload and wrote to cheer myself up and to remind me of the good and of hope.


  4. Hannah Gosselin
    Dec 09, 2015 @ 18:08:29

    I really enjoy reading this after reading Mary’s poem…it’s good to see the two sides of the color red and I love the examples you bring…one of my favorites is the cardinal!


  5. Sherry Blue Sky
    Dec 09, 2015 @ 20:42:31

    I like this perspective that red can be the colour of peace – love all of the red things you listed.


  6. Sumana Roy
    Dec 10, 2015 @ 01:42:54

    Peace is indeed the color of our soul woven by love…it is the color of life…this is so well represented by your use of ‘red’…


  7. kaykuala h
    Dec 10, 2015 @ 04:39:51

    Peace comes in many colors – like the rainbow,
    Like us humans or animals or flowers

    Great opening Toni! Peace comes in and imposes itself in whatever hues. One takes the cue and continues with the good fortune and good intentions!



  8. Jae Rose
    Dec 10, 2015 @ 08:36:07

    Thank you for reminding me how vibrant and full of life red can be…reminded me that way back when it wasn’t pink for a girl, blue for a boy – but red for girls…and all the little T-shirts and clothes and toys you could get (as well as strawberries and tomatoes) which felt so good


  9. Myrna Rosa
    Dec 10, 2015 @ 11:28:17

    Reading this made me happy. It is beautiful. I especially like the last few lines. It’s interesting that i’ve been drawn to red lately. Now I’ll allow red to taint my heart freely. I’ll think of it as peace.


  10. Sanaa Rizvi
    Dec 10, 2015 @ 17:07:04

    Loved visiting this poem again 🙂 truly exceptional work!!


  11. Björn Rudberg (brudberg)
    Dec 10, 2015 @ 17:09:28

    I really like the thought of what red can bring.. there is warmth and compassion in red… I like your list of things (and the tie back to the tomatoes)… you have a very inspired week Toni.


  12. Grace
    Dec 10, 2015 @ 17:41:42

    Love how you expanded the peace theme to not only the red tomato but also to red strawberries and to blood donation ~ This is my favorite part:

    Peace is what we make it and it is colored by our souls
    our hearts our words and actions.


  13. Mary
    Dec 10, 2015 @ 18:45:06

    Enjoying your poem yet again for Open Link, Toni!! Your points are very well made.


  14. Victoria C. Slotto
    Dec 10, 2015 @ 18:51:50

    I really like how you put out your hypothesis and then set out to prove it with so many beautiful example of how red is so often misread. The one that struck me most was the blood transfusion. You’ve given me a whole new insight into the meaning of colors.


  15. Glenn Buttkus
    Dec 10, 2015 @ 18:54:48

    It is good to jerk our focus away from overly simplistic Yin-Yang definitions of something as complex & elusive as Peace. Time to cast the white witch as evil & the black one as good. As the many poems for Mary’s prompt showed us, defining peace is not the same thing as achieving it. Red has always been my favorite hue.


  16. thotpurge
    Dec 10, 2015 @ 20:01:12

    Beautiful !


  17. The Literary Doc
    Dec 11, 2015 @ 01:39:35

    I love that line about tomatoes passed over the fence. Very nice!


    Dec 11, 2015 @ 02:43:28

    I love the way you turn concepts and prejudices around, making a truly positive experience to read your poem. Thank you for the peace.


  19. insidetheclock
    Dec 11, 2015 @ 07:26:29

    Thank you for giving me a new association to the color red. I needed that. Peace is what we make it, indeed. Thanks for the read!


  20. Polly
    Dec 11, 2015 @ 07:50:37

    I like the concept…is it the Chinese for whom red is a celebratory colour, or good luck? Nice.


  21. writersdream9
    Dec 11, 2015 @ 09:01:59

    Red is indeed the color of peace. Brilliant writing!


  22. Bodhirose
    Dec 11, 2015 @ 21:04:49

    This is great Toni. You show us very clearly that red is the color of peace, love and for celebrating. Wonderful and inspiring!


  23. Bryan Ens
    Dec 11, 2015 @ 23:42:56

    I LOVE this!! I think that this poem would be an amazing jumping off point for a dVerse prompt…take a colour and associate it with something that it is often NOT associated with…especially as red so often symbolizes conflict, you did a brilliant job of showing how it is a colour of peace.


  24. Bernice
    Dec 13, 2015 @ 15:58:37

    So true we do not think of peace as being red – very insightful!


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