In death’s vicinity – the Eastern Front

“We lived in death’s vicinity. But it was not death itself that was grievous. Its indecision, its omni-presence, constituted its horror and and its greatness. It was not the long-spared it loved but the quickly-felled. Yet, it transformed us with each passing year, led us through the secret chambers of the soul, awakened the angel in the good and the spirit of Cain in the bad. It filled us up and boarded us over, cast out fruit from us and created a sea of misery from a drop of melancholy. Thus it grew up over us like a triumphant tree.