So sitting there wasted in a bar in Berlin there is this kid called Germany, somewhere near the place that used to be the Death Strip on the Eastern Side of the Berlin Wall.I never knew this Berlin, or this Germany, this divided monster, this moth-eaten beast, ravaged and ravished till he nearly forgot who he was in a haze of drugs and booze and painkiller and as much sex and he could stomach. He is still trying to forget what was done to him, looking for a face and a costume and a dream that fits him. He is still very much alone, and no one wants to be his friend or play kickball with him anymore. So he huddles in the warm, broad breast of re-stitched Berlin, drinking in bars and looking for nightclubs and thinking he sees her smiling through her own shadows, and he puts his face in his hands and he feels old, even though he's still such a child. France, England, Spain, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland-- they just laugh and they tell him all the time, "You are such a fucking child. You'll grow up one day. You'll see."They don't pick on Italy nearly as much, all hanging out with France and being Sophisticated and lounging around Venice looking smug. They never invite Germany to their parties, saying that all Germany wants to do is drop acid and rave dance and eventually gets way too fucked up and pisses on the sofa and starts making inappropriate overtures to the dog. That only happened once, Germany insists, indignant. He's over that now. He's had rehab and is doing his steps. He's trying so hard, but the way all the other countries treat him just makes him want to take a bunch of x and fuck some willing party chick in a bathroom stall. This germany is some squalling brat I never knew. This is the kid that we kicked into shape when he was still a babe, teaching him about manliness and hatred and how they were nearly the same thing, teaching him to cut up queers with long knives and to button his collars on the right, and about the power of unity, and about power. We gave him billy clubs and jackboots and lightning bolts and told him stories about Thor and Odin and Heimdall and we left out Balder for being too femme, and he listened to us until Social Services came and took him from our care. We fucked up, and we know it. Some fucking parents. So now, removed from that role, I watch him from a distance, skulking through a still bewildered Berlin and wondering who he is, feeling like shit because I what I told him was bullshit, and we never taught him about how to see for himself.