“I don't want you to be young and beautiful. I only want one thing. I want you to be kind-hearted - and not just towards cats and dogs.”
Turning older has obviously stunted my ability to post. And after Rae was so kind with her words. She knows that words are like seeds that we plant in our fertile hearts, not in the cold ground. I doubt I could love her more. She also knows that I’ve been buried the past few weeks—she never makes me feel guilty in the slightest for falling behind. Nothing but understanding outta Rae. I wish all of you could know her. Rachel’s kindness is stunning, breathtaking actually.
Her warmth has me thinking about how much I value kindness. Makes me think I should read more about it. So I tinkered around and researched novels that approach kindness. A story of an old Russian woman who raised a brick with the intent to hurl it at a captured German soldier, but at the last minute instead hands him a piece of bread certainly caught my eye. The old woman has no idea why. This is just one inexplicable act of kindness described by Vasily Grossman in his book Life and Fate, which chronicles true Russian/German events during one of the darkest times in our history. From what I’ve read this is a “gritty” book. It’s not for the faint reader. It is a dense novel that has been described as “a classic written by arguably the greatest war correspondent of World War II.” One reviewer raved that “Giving [Life and Fate] any kind of rating is like rating the Mona Lisa or a Beethoven symphony. It is a life-changing work of art.” Another said, “Like Elie Wiesel’s Night this masterpiece gives the world something it never ever should forget.” My curiosity is piqued. When I can carve out time for an 800 plus pager (after Anna Karenina), I am going to read this with the idea that I will learn something invaluable about kindness. Looks like Grossman and Rachel have a lot in common.