( my traditional June 22nd article)
"And the marble of lieutenants,
The plywood monument'
B. Slutzky (in translation)
In a very good WWII novel "The Young Lions' by Irvin Shaw there is a scene when Noah Akerman spends his first night with his future wife Hope. That takes place on the June 22nd. They listen to the radio after making love and hear about the German invasion of Russia. Then Hope says, "I will remember this day, June 22nd forever."
I first read that book in Russian translation. I remember feeling a profound disbelief and disgust when I read that episode. How could a person associate that day with something joyful, something positive. On that day my dad was bombed in a children's camp. On that day thousands died and that was only a start of the slaughter. That day did not live in infamy. It lived in horror.
Now, after 70 years had passed since that day, in another country and watching the bombing of Libya I understand Hope better. Horrors are a part of life anyway; joys of true love are rare. Her own world was complete at that moment and although Noah Akerman eventually was sucked into the mangle of war, that very day would be the only shining beacon in her life further on. Somebody must remember something good about every day.
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