The Olive Branch
– Maeve Mackinnon, 2010 (MCPS/PRS); Arr. Mackinnon, Lyon, Watson (MCPS/PRS)

 

The troubles in the Middle East are a highly charged topic of debate. The daily and relentless injustices inflicted on the people of Palestine are unimaginable for so many of us in the Western World and this song is my small contribution in helping to spread awareness about this issue.

 

Once upon an olive branch in 1998
To a land deep in conflict, the autumn deals its fate.
Peace is a concrete line, built to separate
And with this wall between us the hard times await.

 

Once upon an olive branch, the ravens circle high
Dawnraids at daybreak, as Saracens stand by
Families arrested and tensions reach the sky
Hope slips away from us and darkness is nigh

 

CHORUS:
Leave me to grieve now the olive branch is broken
And it broke as I shed my tears.
Leave me to grieve, give me something to believe in
The second intifada’s drawing near.

 

Once upon an olive branch in 1999
115 homes reduced to just nine
If home is where the heart is, the heart must be blind
As land disappears in these hard troubled times

 

Once upon an olive branch there grows a bitter thorn,
Families evicted and all the neighbours gone
Forced into exile, indignity and scorn
The olive branch is twisting, rebellion is borne.

 

CHORUS

 

Once upon an olive branch, millenium unfolds
As corpses of children lie in the olive groves
Truth is distorted as ethnic cleansing grows
And if this is democracy I’ll take another road

 

Once upon an olive branch I heard somebody say
The other side once suffered, now it’s gone the other way
All the world watching has got its part to play
Those who favour justice can’t afford to look away.

 

CHORUS:
Leave me to grieve now the olive branch is broken
And it broke as I shed my tears.
Leave me to grieve now the olive branch is broken
History repeated, injustice unspoken
Leave me to grieve, give me something to believe in
The branch of resolution drawing near