Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Have You Heard the News Today? — Day #7

No prelude today. This is prompted by Lisa Romeo and an actual news story.

Prompt: Have You Heard the News Today?

I read, on Facebook of all places, that Miep Gies died recently at the age of 100. Miep gave safe harbor to Anne Frank and her family for two years during World War II. She was a hero — a quiet, reluctant hero who did what she did because it was the right thing to do.

As a writer, I am continually awed by the power of words and books. I, like most girls, read The Diary of Anne Frank when I was a young adolescent, just like Anne in her diary. I didn't know then, but realize know that Anne played a profound role in me becoming a writer.

She was completely and utterly herself in her diary. We could all relate to her feelings, her  relationships, her small joys and petty complaints in the dire circumstances in which she lived. She was a girl like any other girl, and that is why her story has remained so powerful after all these years. She put a human face — a beautiful face — on one of the most unimaginably inhuman events in history. Her little diary made us realize that if it could happen to her, it could happen to anyone.

I long to write with the clear, passionate voice of Anne Frank. I wish I could be as honest and uncensored as she was in her diary. 

I mourn with the world the loss of the woman who tried and failed to save Anne, but who did save her diary for us to treasure. She was truly a blessing.

Time:  11 minutes


Ciss B said...

I never read the book as a girl since I grew up in the 50s and it wasn't here in the Midwest then, but I taught it in middle school and then later I got a chance to read Miep's book which was equally as touching.

Miep gave us a chance to know Anne Frank, and a bit of a chance to understand the Dutch mindset of the time which simply was, "just do what is right." They didn't think of themselves as heroic since it was such a part of their lives and who they were.

We're lucky to have these profoundly brave people to look up to because too many these days see no reason to, "just do what is right."

2KoP said...

Thanks for your comment, Ciss. I used prompt as the basis for a post that will be going up on the Chicago Moms Blog in the next day or two.