by Savitri Devi
Edited by R.G. Fowler
This is the third chapter of Savitri Devi’s previously unpublished book of “prose poems” Forever and Ever.
This poem, unlike the last one, seems much more polished stylistically, although, as noted below, there are a number of typographical errors, which crept in when the poem was transcribed from Typescript A to Typescript B. This transcription was prepared from Typescript B. PDF images of both Typescripts are available: Typescript A and Typescript B.
In transcribing and editing these poems, I have translated the German epigraphs, corrected any spelling and grammatical errors, and “Americanized” and updated the spelling. I have not altered Savitri’s sometimes eccentric capitalization practices. Nor have I altered her punctuation, although I have pruned her sometimes long ellipses down to three dots each. Editorial additions appear in square brackets. Omissions and substitutions are indicated with notes.
—R. G. Fowler
“Am 9. November 1923, 12 Uhr 30 Minuten nachmittags, fielen vor der Feldherrnhalle sowie im Hofe des ehemaligen Kriegsministeriums zu München folgende Männer im treuen Glauben an die Wiederauferstehung ihres Volkes: . . .
So widme ich Ihnen zur gemeinsamen Erinnerung den ersten Band dieses Werkes, als dessen Blutzeugen sie den Anhängern unserer Bewegung dauernd voranleuchten mögen. ”
—Mein Kampf, Dedication1
Then came a day when, confident in Thy increasirng might, in Thy devoted followers and in Thy Destiny, Thou stoodst in broad daylight against the public powers, slave of Thy people’s foes, challenging them in an unequal fight; a day when boldly facing the threat2 of the existing State and its awe-inspiring apparatus3 of repression—its soldiery without ideas, a tool in the hands of respectable authorities without a soul—Thy few and fiery faithful ones marched forth to storm for Thee the citadel [of] undisputed power.
Their countenances bright with joy, their hearts full of that burning love that carries one to the ends of the earth and never turneth backwards; Thy name upon their youthful lips, as in all times to come, already linked inseparably with the holy name of Germany, on they went without fear . . . Sunshine is beautiful, daylight is sweet[,] and yet, more beautiful, and sweeter still is death for Thee, death for Thy great Idea to triumph; for Thy reign to come.
On they went, and no force upon earth or in heaven could stop the impetus of their conquering step; for theirs was Germany’s eternal soul after a long time wide-awake and free; theirs, the message of truth, the spell of resurrection; and theirs,—in spite of all; after the coming flash of power and of glory, and following untold years of martyrdom—the lordship of the future; theirs the world, in its new golden age, after the final crash.
On they went. On its topmost wave, the great unfurling tide of History that none can alter or arrest, carried them to their fated goal: to glory in unending time,—but first, to death. The rifles of the wavering Sate went off, and bullets flew; and on the ground, in pools of blood, lay sixteen men of those who were the very best of Germany’s best. Thy faithful ones of early days, Thy chosen few, men of all trades and of all ranks, (there are no social ranks, among us who believe in the nobility of Aryan blood alone)[,] men of all ages too, the oldest over fifty, the youngest just nineteen, but all young men at heart, all looking to the future, all men who firmly felt, that, to begin anew, and build in truth and fervor, trusting one’s fate, it is never too difficult, never too late.
In brotherly equality, in pools of blood they lay, the first one of an endless list of martyrs of the Cause of Life in truth, under its modern form; the first to win the honor of giving up their lives for Thee and for new Germany, their resurrected Fatherland—and Thine—and; beyond that, new Aryandom, Thy world-wide dream of beauty,—and mine.
There they lay, while the might that Thou wert soon to overthrow—the might of those authorities in the service of foreign wealth—gripped a few other of Thy trusted ones, and Thee Thyself, and led you all into captivity. On Thee, the heavy fortress doors were shut for several months.
The newspapers mentioned the fact, mentioned also the death of the first martyrs. But outside Germany, few understood how great a happening had taken place; how great a new upheaval, in joyous sacrifice and death was taking shape.
As for me, on the tragic day on which the Sixteen fell for Thee, I was hundreds of miles away, standing alone upon the marble steps of the Parthenon, and gazing at the City at my feet, and at the distant4 sea.
I was eighteen, and fair to look upon; yet no womanly sadness brought tears to my eyes. Ardent, but proud, and already before this birth, marked out to love [none] but Godhead incarnate, never was I to know the joys and anguishes of human passion, nor its madness.
I loved a dream, and tears were in my eyes because I was becoming conscious that it was but a dream. I loved eternal Greece—that Greece of long ago, that survives in the lofty columns within the shade of which I stood; also that Greece of yesterday, bulwark of Aryan mankind in the Near East, who, for five hundred years, resisted the victorious Turks. I loved the Prince of Macedon, the fair-haired conqueror, whose march towards the East, resembled the procession of an irresistible god; the Man who led men of my race across the Indus River for the second time. I loved, also the Grecian chieftains who, in 1821, swore to reconquer freedom or die. And tears were in my eyes because of bitter thoughts.
All round me, in the dazzling midday light, my beloved Athens spread its white houses, in the midst of which, a few cypress trees here and there and rows of pepper trees, put patches of dark green or lines of greenish gray; its white houses that covered the lower slopes of steep Lykabettus, up to the pine tree wood I knew so well. Beyond the outskirts of the town, towards the east, the barren rocks of Hymettus, in light, almost transparent gray, shone against that same fathomless blue background, and, to the south, the sparking Aegean, bluer still—deep, violet-blue.
Oh, how beautiful it all was: that City, from a distance, so white in the sunshine, amidst its clear-cut hills, and high above all, the everlasting sky; and far around all, the everlasting sea!
And yet, my heart was sad, for out of all that beauty, no Grecian voice had yet answered my fiery call to freedom, and my call to pride. None had agreed with me when I had said that worse than [the] Turkish yoke was slaver to the so-called “great” powers who had just won the first World War. And when, leaving the rest aside, I had recalled the latest blow of fate—the loss of Asia Minor—and had accused the treacherous Allies and had accused the spirit they embodied, (the spirit of Democracy) and accused the alien interests behind their policy, and tried to prompt my brothers to have nothing to do with them and their soul-killing “culture[,”] no one had seemed to share my burning indignation; none had echoed my hate.
Had Greece, then, irredeemably lost every sense of grandeur, and consented to be forever a tool of the western Allies, a docile instrument of their intrigues, exalted when it suited them, and the following day insulted and abandoned? Was she no longer to remain, in opposition to both Turk and Jew, the advanced guard of Aryandom? The treacherous Allies, by doing all they could to help the Turks to win the Asia Minor War, acted as enemies of Aryan blood. But why did not Greece hate them, as I did? Were not the flames of devastated Smyrna, was not the forced exile of two millions of Hellenes enough to stir, in her, that selfsame disgust as I felt for those great money-ridden States that had, six years before, against her will, dragged her into their unjust war? Was all that not enough to make her say, with me: “Away! Away from that hypocrisy, which Democracy stands for! Away, away from the serfdom of the decaying West! Back to national values; back to the spirit of the national Gods of old, heralds of Life undying! Back to ourselves[,] to Hellenism,—to Aryandom!” (The two, in my eyes, were the same.)
These were my thoughts as, on the memorable day, as I stood upon the steps of the Temple in ruins, and beheld in its beauty, under the midday Sun, the violet-crowned City.
My Leader, had I then, but known the deeper meaning of Thy holy Struggle! Had I but understood that the Sixteen, whose death the papers of [the] following day stated within a line, had shed their blood for something more tan a new form of government! Oh, had I seen in them, what they already were: the vanguard of an endless host of fighters for the rule of the natural elite of mankind,—the first one in my times to die for my eternal Greek ideal of domination of the aristoi,—the best, in body, character and soul! And had I understood, that, in [the] modern world, the best, according to my heart’s conception, according to the everlasting standards of health, and strength, and beauty, set forth by my Greek masters were the elite of Thy inspired countrymen: Thy5 best!
In youthful fervor, then and there, I should have flown to Thee!
Oh, why did I not know? In the heat of Thy struggle, I should have been so happy; I should have loved Thee so, from those great early days[.]
Yes, there I was, and Thine already in spirit, and by the Gods themselves chosen to remain Thine, throughout a thousand wanderings. Why did I not guess? Who can tell? All penetrating is the Gods’ insight—and strange, and often disappointing, outwardly, are their ways.
“On 9 November 1923, at 12:30 in the afternoon, in front of the Feldherrnhalle and likewise in the courtyard of the former War Ministry in Munich, the following men fell in true faith in the resurrection of their people: . . . Thus I dedicate the first volume of this work to the common memory of you, its blood witnesses, may you shine on before the followers of our movement.”—Trans. R.G. Fowler
2 Reading “thread” as “threat.”
3 Reading “apparel” as “apparatus.”
4 Deleting a superfluous “the.”
5 Reading “thy” as “Thy.”