Oh, Poland

(From a 1980 Tate Modern exhibition: Gilbert & George. Black Cross.)

There are no words for what happened just now. No good ones, anyway. This is a tragedy overlapping another tragedy (Katyn, that is, in case you don’t realize). I don’t even understand how something like this can be possible. This sort of thing belongs in screenplays. It shouldn’t happen to people. Nor should it happen to countries.

Like I said, I haven’t got the words.

…I stand in stillness, hear the migratory cranes,
Their necks and wings beyond the reach of preying hawks;
Hear where the glow-worms glide across the plains,

Where on its slippy underside a viper writhes through stalks.
Amid the hush I lean my ears down grassy lanes
And listen for a voice from home. Nobody talks.

– Adam Mickiewicz. Translated by Leo Yankevich.

A few things to remember you by

me attempting to rip-off some "28 Weeks Later" cinematography while at Wawel Castle
more Wawel: onward, my minions. I'll watch you fight to the death for me, and maybe have some tea.
moar Wawel! "I just want to feel! Real love! Feel the home that I live in!"
not quite dragon's teeth, but they will have to do
shortly after squatting down to take this picture on our walk to Market Square, I nearly fell face first into a puddle. I am made of class.

This is me right now

Also, Poland is beautiful. All clothed in a snowy shroud. But what else is new, really? I have always loved this country. It’s in my tendons and my blood and other parts of me as well. It’s the country where I shot a gun for the first time.

Paustovsky loved Poland, and Paustovsky and I are practically brother and sister. He wrote one of the best autobiographies ever, incidentally. Everything is in it – Kiev and Bulgakov, Moscow and Gilyarovsky, summers in Bryansk, war in Lublin. His Kievan ghost was the first to hold my hand (squeeze his nails into my palm, truth be told) and tell me to write. So, you know. This is srs bzns.