WWI: Fifty two months, fifty two posts – 5 – Stille Nacht

Much has already been said, both on screen and in print, about the Christmas Truce of 1914, so I will not add to the discussion here.

Instead I offer a piece of flash fiction that is not about the truce itself, but giving a glimpse of the thoughts of one of the soldiers who experienced it in the aftermath. On this very night, in fact, one hundred years ago:

Stille Nacht

Less than a week ago, there was hope. A fool’s hope, to be sure, but hope none the less. Comradeship, freely offered, from the unlikeliest quarter had warmed him more effectively than any mug of tea could manage.

Now it is not to be spoken of. Handshakes to be forgotten, gifts hidden, humanity put aside.

The New Year approaches, bringing not good cheer but bitter cold, and thoughts more bitter still. But still, as he pulls his coat tight around him, and his eyes close, it is the remembered echo of Stille Nacht wavering across the void that heralds sleep.

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