What is War to a Kid in Ukraine? - Odd Nugget
War is heralded by its supporters as a song of triumph and freedom.
It is banner waving.
It is pomp and marching.
It is metal, resplendent and cold in bright sunlight.
“It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.” ― Voltaire
This childlike view holds up through the eyes of actual children, you'd imagine.
To a child, war is a plastic figurine shooting imaginary missiles at a giant robot.
To a child, war is a smattering of pixels in pleasing colors, dotting a lightbox where stories are told - start to finish. What begins ends and good comes of it.
A child doesn't consider the possibility of neither hero nor apparent oppressor in the story being entirely 'good' or 'bad' at all.
“I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.” ― Albert Einstein
A child dwells in the immediacy of existence. Survival is a simple game of reliance and no lies of significance are ever told.
Their mother's hushed tones, soothing and surreal as arms envelop theirs and footsteps quicken, melt into the general periphery of each day's expected newness.
Shrapnel speeding like lightning through cars, windows and walls as shrieks ring out alarm... These mix with the ordinary tensions of playtime. Hide. Seek. Seek.
Father dissapears. Mother takes too long to return. A strange game.
“War is what happens when language fails.” ― Margaret Atwood
Play time intensifies.
Night begins to fall.
Men sleep outside.
Fireworks flash in every direction.
Father sleeps outside.
Play time feels less fun - time to go home.
Mother sleeps outside.
“Only the dead have seen the end of war.” ― Plato
A child caught in the crossfire has no time to think.
That time is taken from them - stolen.
My heart goes out to everyone caught in the crossfire in Ukraine. To civilians. To children. To soldiers too young to know any better. To soldiers too tired to feel any worse.
I pray those who survive can move on with their lives soon.
I pray we all can.
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