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THE TAKING OF GORIZIA

Gorizia Santa, Gorizia Maledetta: the city has suffered for a century the same commonplace that in times the most macho of macho people used for women: either saint or whore. Neither one nor the other, of course. The war 15-18 has become, in the centenary, simply the useless carnage: a judgment that is also well-referred to the Pelopponean War, the Trojan War, the Punic Wars, the Napoleonic Wars. The death of one man is in itself an irreparable loss, let alone that of a hundred thousand: because so many died to take Gorizia. But to objectify the First World War means to strip oneself from political sympathies, to immerse oneself in the atmosphere of the time, which lived of strong nationalisms not only in Italy but in the whole Europe. History pushed towards the dissolution of a multi-cephalous, autocratic and aristocratic creature, which had made its time, the Habsburg Empire. Today many people regret it, but the peoples subject to it at that time seemed to be on the leash of a master and they wanted to get rid of it. Austria Hungary began the great massacre: the excuse was to wash away the shame of Sarajevo. It was joined by the Kaiser Germany and the Ottoman Empire, not exactly examples of democracy and tolerance: does anyone remember the massacre of the Armenians? The bewilderment is such that, as often happens in Italy, the object of contention, which should be "historicized" a century later, is, with trivial cynicism, used to make one or the other ideology prevail, a conventional sector, especially in our region. Gopolis publishes the festival of Santa Gorizia di V. Locchi and provides the link to listen - with beautiful images - Gorizia you are cursed. Everyone has an opinion.


The Festival of Santa Gorizia by Vittorio Locchi

Translation of a version written by Vittorio Locchi

It was all like a rainbow the air dome of the Karst. The stones shone like calcined bones; far away the Julian Alps seemed like enchanted domes. All the highest mountains lifted their white cloaks and warmed themselves in the sun, while the wind and the seeds passed to sow. There, in the distant, distant, white and shining plain, the sea was like a spear fallen to a giant lancer, as they are in fairy tales. And if Calvary did not blossom, if the Karst did not blossom, always in torment under the fury of the blows, all the hearts sown with hope blossomed there. It was said: "We are going: this time we are going! We shall skip the Soča like roe deer; who will keep us when the time comes? We all want to be the first to kiss the celestial mantle of St. Gorizia...

Who gave the signal? All sectors were silent... and there goes the flock. They began the bombardments with barks, with wagons, with crashes. They were everywhere with their wings on the heavy torsos; they wobbled in the air, and then downward, clamouring, to devour the trenches; to crush the stones, to melt the fences. Men and slime, irons and stones, all chopping, screaming, all stirring, fracturing and pounding, as if inside the giant sinkholes kneaded the bread of victory for the knave's hunger. And the infantryman was hungry: hunger for the land of the Karst tastier than a loaf of bread, kneaded with blood, baked by grenades, blessed by the brothers who fell with their mouths forward to kiss it dying. Night of August 7, who will forget you? What was the number of the regiment among which I passed in the flashing night, along the white road of Gorizia? Everyone sang, the infantrymen, lying down along the two eyelashes, like boys taken by unspeakable joy. A squadron trot passed by, with their lances low down, and all of them, laughing and shouting, sang to him, making him wing, hands for trumpets, the fanfare, like mad boys coming out of school. And came the order to advance. And the black shadows rose from the wings of the street, and the flashes of light illuminated the forest of the guns, and the regiment spread through the fields like a flight of birds toward the dawn.