Wednesday, November 11

Veterans Day

Then she turned to me, let me see how angry she was, and that the anger was for me. She had been talking to herself, so what she said was part of a much larger conversation. "You were just BABIES then!" she said.

"What?" I said.

"You were just babies in the war -- like the ones upstairs!"

I nodded that this was true. We HAD been foolish virgins in the war, right at the end of childhood.

"But you're not going to write it that way, are you." This wasn't a question. It was an accusation.

"I -- I don't know," I said.

"Well I know. You'll pretend you were men instead of babies, and you'll be played in the movies by Frank Sinatra and John Wayne or some of those other glamorous, war-loving, dirty old men. And war will look just wonderful, so we'll have a lot more of them. And they'll be fought by babies like the babies upstairs."

So then I understood. It was war that made her so angry. She didn't want her babies or anybody else's babies killed in wars.

--Kurt Vonnegut, veteran war baby, from Ch. 1 of The Children's Crusade, aka Slaughterhouse Five

1 comment:

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