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Mariupol Chronicles, Part 6

I’m drifting off all the time. Day and night. As if a sleepy dormouse crept into me. I am nodding off even during the horrid airstrikes. Sitting there, so calm and ready to drop — and counting bangs.

In that way, my body must be reacting to stress. It is freezing off. Whatever I do, I do mechanically. I command my dog, grip my cat and run to the corridor. My cat has already resigned to its fate — when he is grabbed and taken to the corridor. Yosef doesn’t even resist. It only meows in embarrassment, but it gave up breaking free from my arms.

And then, I don’t want to eat. At all. Food won’t go down my throat. Losing weight on a diet once was one hell of a job. Nothing worked. Nights were full of dreams about food. The body would call for hourly refueling.

Now I can barely eat. Only for the sake of keeping up strength. I don’t feel like drinking, either. I turned into a camel. I am sluggish like a ship in the desert, chewing some thorn, and rarely drinking. Guess my fat reserves are now at work.

I saw my little nephews today. They came round from the neighboring building — it’s safer than their mom’s nine-story building — there is a bomb shelter. It wasn’t until I saw those kids that I realized how much I was missing them.

Kirill the merry boy is running around and yelling like nothing ever happened. When shells start exploding, he takes his pillow and bedsheet and goes down to a safe place without the slightest fuss. The kids have already grasped what to do quicker than me.

Varya is genuinely worried about her homework. Her teacher sends her tasks, but she hasn’t completed everything yet. She has to break off from her homework and go down to the basement. She’s reading a book about some girl-blogger. She’s already read 18 pages, and there are more than 200 pages left. Light often goes off because of airstrikes, so Varya has to switch on her flashlight.

Tonight the kids were sleeping in the basement. It’s extremely cold and dark. But Grad and Smerch shelling [Soviet multiple rocket launchers — Ed.] are barely audible from there.

I wonder who are those morons waging war with? Are they waging war against children, women, newborns, doctors and patients? Why are these goblins shelling schools, kindergartens, hospitals, maternity hospitals? They turned into man slaughterers and terrorists.

They are the Russian assholes, our children are dying, their parents want to reach you to strangle you with their bare hands. What do you seek for on our land? Perhaps, your own death.

I am dreaming of those horrid shelling to stop and my beautiful city to wake up from the terrible nightmare. I have but one heart’s desire. I repeat it every day as if I were weaving a spell: p_u_t_i_n___d_i_e___r_i_g_h_t___n_o_w

March 2 at 3:27 pm

Russian Text by Nadezhda Sukhorukova, translated into English by Ukrainianvancouver team – Mar 27, 2022

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