13 Comments

What a powerful poem! I read Elizabeth Minnich's book, The Evil of Banality, years ago. One of the points she makes continues to stand out to me. We can't just refer to the cruel, horrific, vicious behaviors of people as "evil." When we do that, we move the actions into an otherworldly realm that cannot be addressed. When we examine and name those behaviors, and realize that they are being done by human beings, to human beings, we can take steps to toward accountability.

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"To name is to know." Fierce and brilliant. Thank you.

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Wow, thank you for sharing. My favorite line is โ€œ It drains will and reason from the weak. Even the strong are in shock.โ€

Thank you. Slava Ukraine ๐Ÿ’›๐Ÿ’™๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ

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Apr 5, 2022ยทedited Apr 5, 2022

Thanks so much for this. It's been hard to say anything at all with some of the details and images that have emerged in recent days. This is how I suppose it always happens. It has always already happened. Before we can name anything. And even if we name... name properly.. even name before the event... we have only been erecting mausoleums. We have always in a way lost the race. Nietzsche's words here acquire a very chilling afterlife that he could not have imagined:

"That for which we find words is already dead in our hearts. There is a kind of contempt in the act of speaking."

And yet speak we must. Name we must. Record we must. Testify we must. There is perhaps no other way. But it is also not pessimistic to state the obvious. That which is extinguished. That which is lost forever. That which cannot be resurrected.

As always I can only express the deepest gratitude, the deepest admiration for all your efforts in this sense. How does someone who's spent an entire life in the archives you have keep going on? This must be one definition of heroism or at least the index of a singular ethical code, or an equally singular reserve of empathy. Again, as always... I'm deeply moved.

On a related note this release seems sadly appropriate:

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/03/31/movies/babi-yar-context-review.html

I have seen some of the director's extraordinary earlier work and look forward (even if one can't look forward to such a subject..) to this one as well.

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Extraordinary that poetry can even be written at a time like this, and such beautiful poetry. It's the art that saves the mind. Slava Ukraine!

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As the writer below has written, the pain is acute and is felt in the heart - every day, every minute.

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A touching and sad poem that goes straight through my heart, and continues to haunt. Thank you for sharing this.

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Prof. Snyder, if you know of Ukrainians who need evacuated from this horror, let me know. Weโ€™re zooming around in a 12-pac van, dropping supplies and evacuating people to Poland, and have more flexibility than the large orgs. kls202020@gmail.com

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Bless you! Stay safe, please. ๐Ÿ’™๐ŸŒผ

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Thank you for translating and sharing with us, it is exactly the right thing today.

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I am following up on my previous post, seeking information regarding organizations that are working on sexual violence/war rape. Here are the organizations that I have found so far:

We Are Not Weapons of War

TRIAL International

UN Action Against Sexual Violence in Conflict

I am not seeing a way to include the links here. I have requested more information from each of them.

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Thank you for sharing it. Such sad, terrible times and this poem beautifully conveys it.

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Tears never depart the eyes in these terrible days. What a poem! Thank you.

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