Survival

Voces

Texto original (en español), aquí

He never drank coffee. He has learned how to prepare it for one reason only: for her to have breakfast in bed every morning. He is a hundred and three. She doesn’t know when she was born. “I guess she’s either older or younger than me”, he says. When she starts to laugh out loud, he is already thinking about the next joke: “Sure her parents knew [when she was born]”. Four years of commitment and eighty laughing. “We couldn’t talk, because if we talked we had to kiss. Neither did she give me a kiss in four years. Not even one!” 

She misses the trees of her childhood, now in Turkish territory and calls someone daily to take her there. She needs them. He cares about the money they saved for years, but lost when the USSR fell. They had gathered it for their funerals. “I just want them to give me my money back, so my children won’t get ruined when we die. And I want them to spend it all on that day”. He looks at her: “When you die, I will not mourn”. She’s laughing so hard she can barely sit straight. He looks at me: “What she doesn’t know is that when I say I will not mourn her passing, I mean that I’m going to rip the hair out of my head”.

Movses and Iskuhi survived the Armenian Genocide. She says “crying is useless”. Survival has to be something like coming to that conclusion.

(Excerp of one of the stories belonging to “Voces del genocidio”)

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