at four a m Kyiv
was bombed, in the spring, the time
when kings go to war
There was a time when school kids learned the verses,
Listen, my children, and you shall hear
Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere,
In Russia, I am told, school kids learned the verses,
Dvadtstat’ vtorogo iyunya, rovno v chetyre utra,
Kiev bombili, nam govorili, chto nachalas’ vojna
Which is translated,
On June 22, exactly at four in the morning,
Kiev was bombed, we were told that the war had begun
It is from a Russian song about the start of World War 2, when the Germans attacked Russia on June 22, 1941.
This morning, I picked up my Bible to start my day and my reading took up at the book of 1 Chronicles, Chapter 20.
“In the spring, at the time when kings go off to war, Joab led out the armed forces. He laid waste the land of the Ammonites and went to Rabbah and besieged it, but David remained in Jerusalem. Joab attacked Rabbah and left it in ruins.”
I guess the world grows older, but the world never grows up.
I am reminded of the lines of Robert Conway, played by Ronald Colman in the movie, ‘Lost Horizons’ when Conway talks about how he would run Foreign affairs:
You see, the trick is to see who can out-talk the other. Everybody wants something for nothing, and if you can’t get it with smooth talk, you send an army in. I’m going to fool them. I’m not going to have an army. I’m going to disband mine. I’m going to sink my battleships – I’m going to destroy every piece of warcraft.
Then when the enemy approaches we’ll say, “Come in, gentlemen – what can we do for you?” So then the poor enemy soldiers will stop and think. And what will they think? They’ll think to themselves – Something’s wrong here. We’ve been duped. This is not according to form. These people seem to be quite friendly, and why should we shoot them?” Then they’ll lay down their arms. You see how simple the whole thing is?
Centuries of tradition kicked right in the pants — and I’ll be slapped straight into the nearest insane asylum.
Is it any wonder that Frank Capra movies were labeled, Capra Corn?
I grew up enamored of war and the study of battles and the romance of it all.
I am reminded of the scene in the book, Gone with the Wind.
A scene not in the movie.
It takes place at the opening barbecue at the Wilkes Mansion, Twelve Oaks.
Talk of war breaks out and in the movie the only one who speaks out against the war is Rhett Butler.
But in the book, Margaret Mitchell wrote this:
Under the arbor, the deaf old gentleman from Fayetteville punched India.
“What’s it all about? What are they saying?”
“War!” shouted India, cupping her hand to his ear. “They want to fight the Yankees!”
“War, is it?” he cried, fumbling about him for his cane and heaving himself out of his chair with more energy than he had shown in years. “I’ll tell ‘um about war. I’ve been there.” It was not often that Mr. McRae had the opportunity to talk about war, the way his women folks shushed him.
He stumped rapidly to the group, waving his cane and shouting and, because he could not hear the voices about him, he soon had undisputed possession of the field.
“You fire-eating young bucks, listen to me. You don’t want to fight. I fought and I know. Went out in the Seminole War and was a big enough fool to go to the Mexican War, too. You all don’t know what war is. You think it’s riding a pretty horse and having the girls throw flowers at you and coming home a hero. Well, it ain’t. No, sir! It’s going hungry, and getting the measles and pneumonia from sleeping in the wet. And if it ain’t measles and pneumonia, it’s your bowels. Yes sir, what war does to a man’s bowels–dysentery and things like that–“
The ladies were pink with blushes. Mr. McRae was a reminder of a cruder era, like Grandma Fontaine and her embarrassingly loud belches, an era everyone would like to forget.
“Run get your grandpa,” hissed one of the old gentleman’s daughters to a young girl standing near by. “I declare,” she whispered to the fluttering matrons about her, “he gets worse every day.
Maybe I’ll just go back to bed and crawl under the blankets.