No Men are Foreign by James Kirkup

Remember, no men are strange, no countries foreign
Beneath all uniforms, a single body breathes
Like ours: the land our brothers walk upon
Is earth like this, in which we all shall lie.

They, too, aware of sun and air and water,
Are fed by peaceful harvests, by war’s long winter starv’d.
Their hands are ours, and in their lines we read
A labour not different from our own.

Remember they have eyes like ours that wake
Or sleep, and strength that can be won
By love. In every land is common life
That all can recognise and understand.

Let us remember, whenever we are told
To hate our brothers, it is ourselves
That we shall dispossess, betray, condemn.
Remember, we who take arms against each other

It is the human earth that we defile.
Our hells of fire and dust outrage the innocence
Of air that is everywhere our own,
Remember, no men are foreign, and no countries strange.

Short Summary

It is a beautiful poem that spreads the message of peace and harmony by telling us that all men are same and there is no difference between them. Therefore, we should not hate and fight one another.

The poem tells us that all the divisions which are based on nation, caste, creed, colour or religion have no base because all the human beings are equal before God and humanity. Since, we are all same, we must shun violence of all kinds and unite to make our lives better.

Summary

In this poem, the poet says that no men are strange and no countries are foreign. Under the different uniforms, all human beings are the same. The man made boundaries are superficial. We all walk on the same earth and after death all people lie under the same earth. All human beings breathe in similar manner.

All people enjoy the same sun, air and water. All have similar hands and the labour done by all is also similar. Moreover, the eyes that they possess also wake and sleep like ours. Therefore, the poet says that when we hate one another, we betray humanity.

By raising arms against each other, we defile the earth that belongs to all of us. When we drop bombs on one another, the fire and dust rising from them outrage the innocence of the air that belongs to all of us. Therefore, we should remember that no man is foreign and no countries are strange.

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