I finished Ogawa Yoko-sensei’s “Revenge” last night, and aaaaahhh. AAAAAAHH. So good. God, I wish I could write short stories like that. (Let’s be honest; I just wish I could write short stories.) I won’t say anything about it, plotwise, because that might spoil your enjoyment of it and YOU’RE GONNA READ IT. Or, like, I think you should (^_~)
Next up on my list is “All The Light We Cannot See” by Anthony Doerr, which was recommended to me by my neighbour. I…am hesitant. Not for any other reason than WW2 novels make me feel…it’s kinda like someone’s put hooks into my collarbones and is dragging me downwards slowly? I don’t know why, but anything that touches on the Holocaust is painful for me to deal with. I have no familial or blood connections to anyone who was hurt by it; the literal closest I get to it is that the jeweller who designed my mother’s engagement ring and my parents’ wedding rings was a Polish Jewish survivor of one of the concentration camps. Mum said she noticed his tattoo when he was working on her ring, and asked if he’d been…in the war. He smiled very softly and said “yes, it’s a little souvenir of my time in the camp,” and never spoke of it again. She didn’t have to ask “which camp”, because…well.
It’s odd, but every time I look at my mother’s wedding ring, now, I think of him. I wish I knew more about him. His surname was, apparently, “Polmar”, but that’s not terribly helpful, really, given that it’s not a typical Polish surname, and that it could have been a chosen surname, as many Polish Jewish immigrants to Australia changed their surnames when they settled here, for myriad reasons.
But yeah. Even a tenuous link like that weighs heavy…I cannot imagine what survivors and relatives and all Jewish people must feel, especially in the world’s current state.
(I feel like I need to fall to my knees and apologise over and over, I’m so sorry we let these bastards sneak back into the world, I’m so sorry we weren’t strong enough to keep them away…not that that would be remotely helpful, but emotions are weird and don’t make any sense. All I can do is tear down their posters when I see them, because not in my city, you fucks. Not my people, not my city. It still doesn’t feel like it’s enough, but I suppose nothing ever will be.)