for "The Good War" Project
[Pictures: Day before the escape,
group shot of the "kids"]
What About the Children?
You know for every soldier killed in battle 10 civilians
are cut down in the crossfire.
Doesn't need to be bombs
or bullets, and I got enough of those. Almost every night of
my first two years the night was filled with the sound of air
raid sirens and bombs.
I was woken from my sleep
and rushed to the bomb shelter, surrounded by the organized
denial of the adults not to scream to the heavens, "stop this
Oh we lost some folks. My
dad was deported to Siberia and I did not meet him until I was
35 years old. A good man, I wonder what it may have been like.....uh?
His father and brother didn't
make it. Killed in the concentration camps you know. His brother
Juri was a pianist, loved jazz.....oh well.
What did all this do to
the child within me? Hah......me and the millions of children
born and bred in the midst of madness beyond what anyone can
describe who hasn't been there.
Am I bitter? Goddamn rights
I'm bitter. It left me with deep, dark fears. I'm almost 58,
on the 29th as a matter of fact, and I am just beginning to
understand what all that meant. Every time I see or hear of
yet another war I feel the pain of the children.
Look in the eyes, window
to the soul you know. I can't, I begin to cry and I feel hollow
We escaped from the horror
in a small boat, crossing the Baltic Sea in three days. My mother
told me just recently that the one time she let go of me to
urinate off the side, I let out a scream that she can still
hear echoing in her soul, she's 87.
I was afraid of the sea
ever since. Yet I kept going back to it. Searching it as thought
for a monster.
I found it two years ago
at the helm of an 84 foot schooner 10 days out of San Francisco
on route to Hawaii.
It was a moonless night
and I had just come on "dog watch" when a mini-gale blew up.
We had 4000 sq ft of canvas up and the wind was gusting at 55
knots, with 12-15 ft seas.
I was real scared. As I
looked into that fury I was back on the boat across the Baltic
and I saw as an adult the monster. It wasn't the sea.......
it was the fury of war.
I'm not afraid of the sea
anymore, but I know that the monster is alive and well, tearing
into the souls of children all over the world.
There's only one way to
stop the monster you know.