Tuesday, November 20, 2007

As the mountains feel the wind

The wind here on the mountain lives and breathes. Some days it wisps carefully through the trees, gentle kisses on the upturned palms, harboring its secret strength. Then there are days when it roars down the mountain, spitting hisses among the flora, throwing diaphanous arms around everything in its reach. It moans through the eaves and whistles through narrow cracks, calling to me in my dreams as a loud, monstrous bellow – a mythical creature never seen but harshly felt, with the strength of a thousand Herakles.

There is a dark and terrible history to this mountain village, and every time the wind blows with such might I hear the cries and prayers of the 149 villagers who were burned alive by Nazis in 1944. It is a haunting feeling, one of sorrow and regret, not only for my own mistakes but those of giants. There is so much grief hidden in this mountain, and even though the wind tries time and again to carry it out to sea, the memories of this place cannot be forgotten.


Laurie Constantino said...

What a haunting post. My initial reaction was to ask why they were burned alive. But then I realized it was a pointless question to ask in the context of Nazi atrocities.

melusina said...

The story actually goes (at least the one that I heard) that a German soldier was murdered up here and so the Nazis corralled the villagers into the bakery and burned them in retribution.

Unfortunately, these types of tragic stories can be found all over Europe, but this particular one feels close to me now that I live in a village that is still feeling the pain.