1939: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Arrogance

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November 12, 2014 by Melanie L.

My father-in-law sent for us.Mika_Nissman_and_husband

“Education” and “opportunity,” he baited.

My wife, mother of three, added “prosperity” and “please.”

But, I cost us our lives.

“I’m a doctor,” I countered. “We’ll be fine. The Nazis won’t come for us.”

My poor kinderlach.

 

http://yeahwrite.me/writing-challenge-winners-187/

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26 thoughts on “1939: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Arrogance

  1. Your writing gives me chills. Such a powerful piece!

    Like

  2. Stacie says:

    So sad, the people that stayed to help and then were killed.

    Like

  3. theinnerzone says:

    This is quite powerful and touching.

    Like

  4. Christine says:

    I love that you told a whole story here, start to finish, sad as it is. Really nice job.

    Like

  5. Briefwords says:

    Yep, very powerful. Really sad. Really chills you. Its impact really stays with you afterward, and even as you’re reading it it really hits you. I also had ancestors killed in the Holocaust.

    Like

  6. Briefwords says:

    I just want to add, this is the best one I’ve read so far, the best one in my opinion, no question, hands down. This is the best most impactful one on the microstories grid in my opinion, and I’m going to vote for yours for sure, because yours deserves it. You deserve to win with this.

    Like

  7. Karlee says:

    Wow, that was so vivid a telling. Beautifully written, perfectly captures the tragedy of the Holocaust.

    Like

  8. KymmInBarcelona says:

    Tragedy is always that much more tragic when one’s own flaws are involved.
    Love how the photo reflects your title!

    Like

    • Melanie L. says:

      So true. And thank you regarding the photo. So, the photo is the only one I have of my aunt and uncle. They and their three children are presumed dead in the Holocaust but we just don’t know the details. We don’t even know the kids’ names. The expressions seemed arrogant and that matched the family lore that they believed they’d be ok because he was a doctor. Since my uncle is the in law, I blamed him. Who knows though.

      Like

  9. How strong and powerful they must have been to able to stay and serve despite knowing their fate. I can relate because we too had a moment in history, where we were punished for being who we are. Beautiful, strong and sad piece.

    Like

  10. Jen says:

    ouch. Such a tragedy this whole thing was!!

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  11. Strong and powerful story. So much said in so few words. Brilliant!

    Like

  12. Tina says:

    A direct punch on this one. Great writing!

    Like

  13. Sarah Ann says:

    Such a succinct and powerful piece. No wonder it was top three and editor’s pick – well done.

    Like

  14. […] 1939: life liberty and the pursuit of arrogance by melanie […]

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Behind the Blog

Melanie L.

Melanie L.

I'm a happily re-married, full-time lawyer, and full-time mom raising two adorable vilde chayas (Yiddish: wild things) named Monkey and Peanut (not their real names!). I am often seen in public counting to three. In addition to parenting and writing, I also love photography, cosmology, evolutionary anthropology, and all things Israel.

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