The insurgent accounts of witness
My war 1939-1945
I'll relate an event, maybe events that took place after the war but had grown out of the cruelty.
There is such a place where, during the Uprising, I was for some minutes and then I got back there very often...
I went with Antek to his family at Brzozowa. We got to the professors' house.
A sudden shooting!
We're turning back, running to Celna. Antek falls down on the floor. Thinking he was shot I get back, but he's getting up on his own - his forehead injured. Falling down he hit something with the head. Blood flooded his eye. We are running to the Marketplace. Here the nurse is catching him. After the dressing we're going back to Podwale.
At Brzozowa I had already been before the Uprising. Going with Grandfather at Rybaki to his friend, I couldn't refuse myself the pleasure of running onto the Stone Little Stairs.
The street not-street, fascinated me very much. The very little stairs! Down and up. Through the whole buttress.
I went there on a sunny, April day of 1945. Stone Little Stairs filled with debris were difficult to be crossed over.
Stone Little Stairs in 1956
I turned into the professors' burnt house. I sat on a rescued stone little bench. I was looking at Vistula. I was looking on its other side...
They were near...
We had been awaiting help from there but cannons got silent...
They didn't even drive Stukas away...
They're waiting for our death...
It's hard to think about it...
I was looking at a flowing river. Lots of water. Spring one. Along Brzozowa I went down to Mostowa. Going up Mostowa to my house glued to the Paulines' Church.
Going Brzozowa one could see that people got accommodated in the debris. Before the wall hole that led to a cellar den there was sitting a woman. When I approached her, she said smiling - good morning (then on the Old Town everyone greeted one another). She looked at me friendly and asked:
- Haven't you seen my little Tadzio? - she asked.
It was shocking. Mother was waiting for the son who hadn't got back to her. Maybe his body was still lying somewhere under the debris?
Many years passed by...
In the seventies, in spite of the complicated procedure, I succeeded in going on holidays to Gagry (in Abkhazia). Probably it's the most beautiful place at the Black Sea. I was staying at my friends' beautiful, fabulous house. In my view there was the sea and snowy peaks of the Great Caucasus.
Everyday there was sitting a woman wrapped in a black scarf, shielded with the grape creepers from the sun. Every time she said something to me but I didn't know Georgian well enough to understand her.
I thought her to be a beggar, though every time I wanted to give her some money Georgians didn't let me do it. Finally I asked - why? They answered unwillingly - she lost her mind. She'd been sitting here for many years waiting for her son to come back from the war...
It was a shock for me that I had already experienced. Probably it had some facial expression as they asked me if I felt good?
I said I'd explain it to them later on...
in our times
drawn up by: Maciej Janaszek-Seydlitz
translation: Małgorzata Szyszkowska
Copyright © 2011 SPPW1944. All rights reserved.