“I was motivated by absolutely humane feelings. I never had any other intention. I never had any other belief than that those poor miserable creatures-that the painful lives of these creatures were to be shortened.”
Karl Brandt, the physician who suggested that Hitler use poison gas to exterminate the Jews.
To Karl Brandt, the people he murdered weren’t human.
They were creatures.
They were “those” poor miserable creatures.
Brandt told himself that killing Jews was an act of mercy; the behavior of a civilized man.
He wore a filthy hospital gown; he had a couple of nametags
on each wrist.
I know he was medically cleared for discharge because patients don’t
leave locked psych units without a nurse to open the door.
They just don’t.
A trained physician sent a gravely disabled man to fend for himself on the streets of the Mission.
I am sick with a past I can’t remember in a present as abusive as the past.
My brain is a raging debate:
“That can’t be real.”
“It didn’t happen.”
I get confused.
from the Blind Owl
“All of life is made up of stories and tales.
I must press the cluster of grapes and pour its essence, spoon by spoon, down the dry throat of this old shadow. Because at this moment all my restless thoughts belong to here and now, it is difficult to know where to begin. My thoughts do not recognize any hour, minute or history.
For me, something that happened yesterday might be more ancient, or less effectual, than an event that took place a thousand years ago.
Perhaps the reason for the appearance of all these reminiscences is the fact that all my relations with the world of the living are now severed, past, future, hour, day, month, and year all have become the same. These stages make sense to the ordinary people, to the rabble—yes, that is the exact word I was looking for
—rabble with two b’s. These stages apply to the rabble because, like the seasons of the year, their lives have recognized divisions and limits and because they live in the temperate zone of life.
My life, on the other hand, my entire life, has had one season and one state. Even though a constant flame burns in the center of my body and, like a candle, melts me away, my life is in a cold zone, in eternal darkness.