GINSENG ROOT / Ira Sadoff When the rented Renault broke down and I broke down on the deserted Autostrasse in sight of the towering Alps, I knew we could be victims as well as tyrants, helpless and not invincible, sorry for ourselves instead of pious to a fault. I thought of our boys in The Great War crossing this legendary highway to take back France, tempting starving kids with chocolate bars, then tempting their moms into more starving kids. Where were they now? A Mercedes passed us by. So in a way I had an answer to the childish question that plagued me like the wounded car that drove us crazy intermittently. My question: do the wealthy suffer? On that rainy Saturday night when we fought over where to go when we meant 'Should we stay together?' 'Suffer by ourselves?' with it. I looked under the hood or just 'Get on with it?' We got on where the engine block had dropped into a muddy ditch. Considering where we were, kilometers from Dachau, not far from the German border, we catalogued each injury we foreigners endured: the hundred gallon tank of gas in Zagreb, the ten-year-old who slipped
The Missouri Review – University of Missouri
Published: Oct 5, 1983
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