Tania Brady

THIRTEEN PARTS OF WAR AND PEACE

  1. Forgive me. I am younger and do not understand war. I never knew anybody close who had been in one. My grandfathers were farmers. They didn’t sign up because they were needed to produce food for the troops.
  2. I see the Anzacs on the television (the dawn service) but I have never been.
  3. My children love Anzac biscuits, which we make at home. They are easy if you have all the ingredients. At play-centre we made large batches, twelve children around the table at a time doling out loose measures for them to mix. They liked to eat the raw mixture too.
  4. I am Australian and Todd was born in New Zealand. We could be Anzacs in our house. It would stand for Australia and New Zealand Artistic Creations or perhaps Amateur Circus. Emma has an Australian passport and Molly is a New Zealand citizen. If we have a third child I don’t know where the birth will be. I like the balance.
  5. Russell Crowe wore his grandfather’s medal to the Academy Awards. He must have really admired his pops war efforts. Or was he saying, “Tom Hanks, this is war!”
  6. The term “shellshock” is so widely used but still a little mysterious to me. My daughter is scared of fireworks and loud aeroplanes but I doubt it is the same thing.
  7. There is a writer on the writers message board I visit who writes war poetry, Mike Subritzky is a regular and always has wonderful advice for people. I read some of his poetry today. It made me cry. I didn’t realise he knew so many people who were affected by Agent Orange or that he had been through 17 cancer operations. He is always so gentle in his messages to others and he called me “mate” once. It meant a lot to me. Banjo Patterson was my favourite poet in primary school, but unlike Mike, my favourite poem is The Man from Ironbark.
  8. I remember the 80’s fad where fatigue and camouflage clothing were in fashion, as they were last year. I was in my teens and 20’s and hung out in Army Surplus stores looking for additions to my wardrobe. I had a thick, flat, green canvas belt with lots of rivets and holes in it that was slung around my hips over a khaki shirt and cargo pants. I thought I was gorgeous then but now I imagine that it did nothing for my figure.
  9. My husband is late home from work. What must it have been like for war wives? What did you say to hubby when he came home? “Hi hon – had a good day?” Wouldn’t quite cut it, would it?
  10. How did the soldiers deal with the killing? Do they try to forget what happened? It makes me nauseous to see violence on TV, especially some of the advertisements; the ones about speeding and drink driving are very graphic. I can’t imagine what it must be like to use a weapon on someone. I am such a wimp.
  11. Peace is precious. If we all became internally still, peace would be widespread. Is that what Buddhist monks hope for when they meditate? And those nuns they have been studying with brain scans, to see what part of the brain handles their peak spiritual experiences? At least it gives us something to work towards. Perhaps there will something we can take for that in the future. They could call it the Still Pill. No relation to the Stun Gun either.
  12. Make love not war. I guess I would have been a hippie in the 60’s if I were old enough. I was born in 1966, the same year as decimal currency. My mother was born the year the Second World War ended. My father suicided in 1975; I am not sure what year he was born although I think he was 32 or 33 when he gassed himself.
  13. I have never read “War and Peace”; although from what I have heard it is a long book, and hard going. Sounds like life.