Letter to Marie and Adolf Geck

Berlin, Hotel Moltke, Rosa Luxemburg on 18 November 1918

My dear, beloved friends, so close to my heart!

     I just received via Breslau the dreadful black envelope.1 My hands and heart were already trembling when I saw the handwriting and the postmark, but I still hoped that the worst would not be true. This is something I cannot comprehend, and tears interfere with my writing. What you are going through—I know it, I feel it, we all know the weight of this dreadful blow. I had so many expectations for him [Brandel], boundless expectations of the contributions he would make for the party and humanity. One has the desire to gnash one's teeth. I would like to help you somehow, yet there is no help, no consolation. My dear ones, don't let yourselves be overcome by the pain, let the sunlight that one always felt shining in your home not go out because of this horrible thing. We all stand under the shadow of blind fate, and it's a consolation for me that I too may perhaps soon be sent to the other world—perhaps by a bullet from our enemies who are lurking on all sides. But as long as I am alive I remain bound to you by the warmest, most faithful, most heartfelt love, and I want to share with you your every sorrow, every pain.

     A thousand greetings,
     Rosa L.

[A second note appeared under Luxemburg's:]

     My most heartfelt sympathy and condolences, and many best wishes.
     Karl Liebknecht

1 Luxemburg had been released on November 8, 1918, from Breslau prison, where she had been held for more than fifteen months. The letter with the black envelope contained the news that Brandel Geck, son of Marie and Adolf, had been killed just as the World War ended.

Quotes taken from Rosa Luxemburg: The Letters of Rosa Luxemburg, edited by George Adler, Peter Hudis and Annelies Laschitza, translated by George Shriver, Verso 2011, p. 478.