I spent six days in a hospital, not experiencing any discomfort at all. The Chief had a great library and received all newspapers. I read during the day, and talked to the Chief in the evening.
Fairly soon my friends reappeared, unexpected as always, ready to take me to my next stop. The Chief was away when Belen'ky entered and said curtly:
"Come on. The sleigh is ready."
"Where are we headed now?" I asked.
"Closer to the capital. We'll spend some time at an estate by Bologoe."
My friends left on the same day as we reached Bologoe. The estate was quite big, surrounded by a dense forest. I stayed at a hunting lodge. It had two small rooms: one of them had an iron furnace and a stack of wood. There were no beds, but enough hay.
If God is watching, I would be happy if my soul were set free from this time of politics, and returned to merely observing humanity. I could better save my spirit if the nations of the world lived side by side in peace and harmony, and gave each other the best of what they have. The English - beauty, the French, glamour, the Russians - humanity, the Germans - knowledge.
Word is akin to second flesh for a human. It's a triunity: soul, body, and word. Which is why only poets are perfect.
I found out that all banks had been sequestrated. It was only yesterday that a baker I know assured me that there was no reason to be worried and advised me against withdrawing money! It's quiet in the streets (I went to the theatre mostly to see "what was going on"). See more
On my way back I heard three hollow gunshots coming from the Admiralty, and then two more, coming from the Stock Exchange building, but nowadays no one pays any attention to it. The show (opening night of the revival of "Snegurochka") was bland. There was no speech before the opening.
Joffe told me about the Tsar and his family, and the state of things said to exist there. He spoke with great respect of Nicolai Nicolaievitch as a thorough man, full of energy and courage, one to be respected even as an enemy. The Tsar, on the other hand, he considered cowardly, false, and despicable. See more
It was a proof of the incapacity of the bourgeois that they had tolerated such a Tsar. Monarchs were all of them more or less degenerate; he could not understand how anyone could accept a form of government which involved the risk of having a degenerate ruler. I answered him as to this, that a monarchy had first of all one advantage, that there was at least one place in the state beyond the sphere of personal ambition and intrigues, and as to degeneration, that was often a matter of opinion: there were also degenerates to be found among the uncrowned rulers of states.
Two questions now take precedence over all other political questions—the question of bread and the question of peace. The imperialist war, the war between the biggest and richest banking firms, Britain and Germany, that is being waged for world domination, the division of the spoils, for the plunder of small and weak nations; See more
this horrible, criminal war has ruined all countries, exhausted all peoples, and confronted mankind with the alternative—either sacrifice all civilisation and perish or throw off the capitalist yoke in the revolutionary way, do away with the rule of the bourgeoisie and win socialism and durable peace. If socialism is not victorious, peace between the capitalist States will be only a truce, an interlude, a time of preparation for a fresh slaughter of the peoples.
Peace and bread are the basic demands of the workers and the exploited. The war has made these demands extremely urgent. The war has brought hunger to the most civilised countries, to those most culturally developed. On the other hand, the war, as a tremendous historical process, has accelerated social development to an unheard-of degree. Capitalism had developed into imperialism, i.e., into monopoly capitalism, and under the influence of the war it has become state monopoly capitalism. We have now reached the stage of world economy that is the immediate stepping stone to socialism.
The socialist revolution that has begun in Russia is, therefore, only the beginning of the world socialist revolution. Peace and bread, the overthrow of the bourgeoisie, revolutionary means for the healing of war wounds, the complete victory of socialism—such are the aims of the struggle.