A butterfly's wing
Yesterday Russia unilaterally and wantonly began the first invasion of another European nation since the Second World War. Today, 25 February 2022, looks like being the day Vladimir Putin’s tanks crash into Kyiv, the capital of his free democratic neighbour, Ukraine. As I write this the mayor of Kyiv, the celebrated Vitali Klitschko, says “the enemy wants to put the capital on its knees and destroy us”. Already hundreds of Ukrainians have been killed and wounded, their families driven from their homes.
In the face of such inexcusable aggression and violence, I hesitated to write this blog post. What could I, a writer of fiction, possibly have to say that would be worth reading in the face of such horror? And yet to write about any other topic today seems unacceptable.
Then I saw this tweet from author Joanne Harris, who I hope will forgive me for quoting her: “With the world locked into a spiral of destruction, what point is there in making art? How can a song or a story or a picture make a difference? But every act of creation is also an act of defiance. And something as small as a butterfly’s wing can sometimes summon the hurricane.”
This is my own small butterfly’s wing: to carry on writing my stories of Roman Britain, today and every day. I hope my fictional portrayals of historic treachery and destruction, and the people who strive against them in The Governor’s Man and my new book The Carnelian Phoenix, will reach others in need of escape, comfort and affirmation.
In the meantime, if like me you want to do something positive right now to help the people of Ukraine, I urge you choose a charity working in the field and support them with a small donation. My own choice was Medécins Sans Frontières, but others you might consider are the Red Cross and Unicef .
That’s it. I’m too upset to write any more today. See you next month, when I hope the world has united to act decisively against tyranny and warmongering.
Jacquie Rogers is the author of The Governor’s Man, published by Sharpe Books and available in paperback and ebook at Amazon. Her linked short story wolves of Viroconium is published in Imperium, by Aspects of History.