Antiwar literary and philosophical selections


Anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

Jules Romains: Selections on war


Jules Romains
From Verdun: The Battle (1938)
Translated by Gerard Hopkins


Since leaving the track they had originally taken for one solitary path after another, they had come across considerably less traffic. How odd it had been – when one could shake off one’s weariness enough to think over what had passed before one’s eyes – that movement of ghosts, many of them so much blood-stained baggage, across the snow, through the woods and valleys, under a diffused and ghostlike radiance; a veiled and waning moon, flickering will-o’-the-wisps, falling stars, and signs and portents in the heavens. A true setting this for processions in the darkness and crimes at dead of night, for secret plottings of a massacre, for the coming and going of wizards and witches on their way to some great meeting in…

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