RSS

Thoughts: The Forgotten Soldier

13 Oct

The Forgotten SoldierThe Forgotten Soldier by Guy Sajer
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Through the eyes of Guy Sajer, I have rediscovered the putrid horror of war and the interminable depth of the human soul. Such a juxtaposition concerns me. In the flowing filth of destruction, can one glimpse the shimmer of the human quality? So many people allude to war as the pinnacle of evil within human nature. Undoubtedly, the mystifying magnitude of our destructive tendencies overwhelms our vision and guides us into stereotypical cognition of ideological evil and discontent. However, does this focus distract us from the humanity of it all?

People fight wars. Hitler and Stalin and Roosevelt and Churchill had their agendas. But make no mistake, soldiers on all sides fought for one thing – their lives. Ideology burns like frail tissue paper under the fire of machine guns and anti-tank weaponry. On the field, men fight men. The war between Nationalist Socialism and democratic capitalism stayed in warm strategy rooms in the capitals. Set men against each other, and allow nature to take its course.

Ultimately, Sajer tells of a soldier’s epic psychological journey. Beginning with a fearful innocence facing interminable threats, it culminates into the carnal void of his existence. Sajer beautifully renders his story with the wisdom of his age and through the eyes of a young man faced with inhumane devastation. He offers insights into the human condition which, unfortunately, may not have surfaced outside of wartime circumstances. As the dread swelled, the man endured.

What bliss to see a man survive the depths of hell on earth!

What pride to know what the human soul can survive!

Or, perhaps, Sajer remains on those battlefields, lying face down; his nose half submerged in a block of ice which has settled in the gasp of his open mouth. Perhaps the man who now walks among us entombs a deathly void in his bosom and only hears the agonized squealing of a newborn child entering a life of suffering. The psychological impact and emotional drought of war will not leave him and no federal counseling will heal him. He has become war. And in his sojourn, we, too, feel war; our own personal decay with him at Memel and on the Dneiper, the beauty of delusion regarding a lost love, a visceral sense of isolation at home because the man who called it home was left mummified in the snow.

View all my reviews

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 13, 2011 in Guy Sajer

 

Tags: , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
The Life and Adventures of a Bibliophile

A Love of Language Put Into Words

Lipsyy Lost & Found

Judging books by their covers since the 90s

746 Books

Confessions of a Book Buying Addict

Exploring Classics

Exploring Literary Classics From Around The World

The Five-Eyed Bookworm

Eclectic Reader. Lover of beautiful book covers.

Redline: Live to Drive!

To share my passion of motorsports to all my readers! To get people of all ages and income levels into the absolute best vehicle possible for their specific needs and to make driving enjoyable every single day!

Consumed by Ink

A word after a word after a word is power. --Margaret Atwood

The Blerd Book Club

Many minds wrapped around a good book.

BLURBNSTUFF

BLURBS ABOUT BOOKS

adoptingjames

Read our Mission. Find out how you can help us adopt James.

Hesperus Press

Independent publishers of both contemporary and classic, neglected and translated books.

Nishita's Rants and Raves

about books, movies, restaurants, and anything else under the sun...

This Is Where The Magic Happens

Literature & Other Loves

Tasseled Book Blog

I read, therefore I am

Stories by Mercilo Daviss

Worlds and moments in just a few words. Have a look around and stay awhile.

pulitzerschmulitzer

My project to read the Pulitzer winners for fiction

The View From Sari's World

Where History & Literature Meet

Stuck in the South

If your into books, movies, celebrity gossip, and love hearing about it from a college senior stuck in MS then this is the blog for you!

%d bloggers like this: