It's heinous to live in Russia. Or is it like this everywhere?
Now everyone is blaming Kerensky, that he was weak and did not take steps to counter the Bolsheviks and the impending revolt in time. This is correct, Kerensky in his weakness and his compliance is guilty before Russia—and what had they, all these democrats, done to prevent the revolt? Nothing! See more
It was them, as soon as Kerensky raised his voice and suggested some resolute measures, who started a reckless racket about “counterrevolution” and tied his hands. I will be honest, despite all my hardiness, I sometimes despair and have thoughts of suicide. It is heinous to live among these people.
I state that I’m in at the moment, it’s not bios, it’s… an antibiosis, a half-life. I’m tired, as the poets say, with every fiber of my being and every atom of my body. Two months in the city and not a minute of rest; it was only in the countryside that I finally realized just how tired I was, how tense. I’m of no use for anything. See more
And it’s strange – during the first week, when they killed Kerensky under the Gatchina and they’d just started to demolish the Kremlin, I slept restlessly. I ate and slept, I couldn’t even walk. The absence of newspapers and any news was intolerable initially, but immediately became as pleasant as Adam’s ignorance of good and evil. Boredom is such a good thing!
There has been a revolution, but a revolution that has turned everything on its head. Everything is upside down. The day comes, and this is the picture that greets us: everything is upside down. And they tell us this is how we must live. See more
They are now the government of Russia. They will be in charge of the Academy of Sciences, the universities, they will make the laws - these illiterates. It is quite clearly impossible, and yet it is true, it exists, it is a fact! And I cannot grasp anything, everything is inconceivable, it’s as if I had to live underwater. Of course, it will end soon, but when? And how? History has never known such a thing. When the barbarians seized power, they still brought with them some way of life, some structure - but this lot? This isn’t the Paris Commune. This is the revolt of darkness against knowledge, stupidity against intellect. And not only revolt but victory and rule. No, I can’t bear it.
Nights and days are hot, dry, and even wonderful, and in politics it's the same: drowning Russia is floundering and letting out bubbles. And on the shore, the spectators and those commiserating: descend, chum, to the bottom. See more
Currently, they are floundering in Moscow, at a conference, and Bolshevik Veresayev starts a protest. And everyone expects fights: a fight in Helsingfors over the Sejm, a fight with Ukraine and pitiful Vinnichenko, a fight amongst themselves. A fight in general. But, nonetheless, Russia is not going to drown in this dirty puddle, even though it will get filthy as a pig.
I am an active member of the Petrograd insane asylum. I take part in the uprisings and the constant gunfire—like a hare takes part in the hunt. Lunacharskys, Trotskys, Lenins abound, Soviets, ministries, crises. And so many idiots!
I saw anarchists marching along Nevsky Prospect with a banner that read “Death to the Bourgeoisie”. From my study, these marching anarchists seem like rabble, imbeciles, pitiful two-legged animals; but when I had a look at their faces, something primordial rose before me. Yes, they were slaves, with their sunken cheeks and eyes, with the eternal sense of injury, their eternal anger and their rebellion. See more
Of course, they don’t understand the first thing about anarchism, but there is something else they do know, something hugely important, something eternal, something which has been overlooked by the indignant respectable public, and they were superior to their own selves and their crudely scrawled banner.
And all this could be seen in their faces. And the way they carried their rifles! It was something wonderful to see. The object which had always been turned against them, threatening them with death, was now in their hands, and this was something that had to be felt. The guns made them into people, and it was written all over their faces. It was clear that with their rifles they felt invincible, strong and free – terribly so. I told the coach driver to slow down to a walk and I gazed at them for some time, moved by the sight, and my soul stirred with an obscure, half-formed desire to join them.
Then the following day, from the newspapers, it was clear again that they are nothing more than fools.
When the whole world curses 'treacherous Russia', I will not curse her. How can I curse my own mother? I will be with her to eke out her bitter existence and only alone I will think 'we unhappy people, we unhappy people!' And perhaps no such Russia is needed at all? Is it possible that this is simply an obsolete term, which time will erase? Life is ineradicable. See more
There will not be 'Russia', but another, and 'young life will play at the entrance to the coffin'. But all the same, in the end, does it matter whose life it is: Russian or young German, the main thing is that life will remain, fields will remain and rivers will remain. And whose boats will travel the rivers - Russian or German - what does it matter? The German boat is even more useful. And people do not all disappear - one hundred million Vasilievs and Petrovs are not to be immediately annihilated. People will adapt! And what if there is, in fact, no need for Russia?
Today is one of the greatest and most joyous days for Russia. What a day!
Feeling rather despondent. Things at the newspaper are not so good, there is a lot of absurd editorial nonsense that would take too long to write about. Stupidity, too. This, together with the censorship, is making the paper very mediocre and childish. Too many sarcastic sketches. But we will continue to fight and not lose hope. I’m as stubborn as a mule in this sense: once I devote myself to something I don’t see anything else, and now, unless I am writing for Russkaya Volya or fighting with Russkaya Volya or talking about Russkaya Volya, I feel I have nothing to live for. It’s absurd!
It would seem that there’s a way of getting drunk without resorting to vodka: exhaustion and autosuggestion. Throughout these days I have been positively, genuinely drunk. I find it rather agreeable.
By my reckoning, 1917 will be my death year.