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Yiskor Ha Shoah, for them whose lives we might otherwise have known

a favorite of mine
a favorite of mine
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Author's Note: As a poem it's not very pretty as some are not; the obscenity of its content dictates that its style remain rough, unrefined but its has its own reading rhythm.

Whether in battle or prayer, they met their end,

a futile struggle, Kiddush Ha Shem.

Their foe, a Goliath of Goliaths, from whom they refused the lies:

that Jews were weak, unworthy and unable to rise.

Never before had there been such daring

from young women and men all of whom caring

for the dignity of their brethren for whom they fought.

such were the lessons history had taught ...

that the Jew stood alone, friendless against foe,

counting his days, tormented by woe.

His task was to prove, though troubled by pain,

Masada’s courageous example had not been in vain.

For three months, the struggle in Warsaw’s Ghetto did not cease,

from its sewers could still be heard: the cries, the anguish, the torture within

by nazis whose glee rose when stifling the yearnings of people to be free.

Cords of 'log-bodies', stacked just the same, secular and religious, none to blame.

For there was NO such difference for the Hun.

The Jews for him were indivisibly one.

Why a people whose destiny has been to enlighten a world through darkness and din,

whose numbers through time have remained so few,

why so despised has been the Jew?

Why did none stop it once it became known?

Enough indifference haven't we sown?

Looking toward heaven as they did each day,

to see friendly planes flying their way.

Send bombs, Please God, before zyklon could,

but the Allies "regretfully" denied they should

destroy the rails leading straight into Hell

from which precious few reemerged to tell

of the horrors awaiting them, so hard to believe,

that neither kindness nor life did the arrivals receive.

They thrust too, the children, into the pit,

an infernally lustful, ravenous fit.

Even the babes whose potential was so great

felt the steel of this magnificent hate.

Whose cries were heard, but listened to by none,

whose heads fell limp with the snap of a gun,

whose parents they saw as naked as they,

for it was like this ... they suffered that day.

Still some question what we have to say,

"Does such a retelling remain relevant today?"

"Somehow it's past, gone. Let it be!"

"Why do you make us suffer to see:

the killings of children, the mountains of bone,

the chambers transforming so many to stone!

Collapsed heaps when flung open the doors wide,

there simply had been ... no place to hide.

Mothers whose skirts offered refuge at least

to little ones uncovered and thrown to the beast.

"Of what use?" they queried, "could they possibly be

in a place whose stench made no one happy or free?"

Nary a glimmer of hope would the murderers give

to those whose wish ... was only to live.

Mothers from children, families asunder,

who else could have withstood this fury and thunder?

Slave labor was needed to further the 'cause',

to build V-2 rockets, to sharpen its claws.

For such, 'noble' men, doctors by fame,

were employed to brutalize, murder, and maim;

so that 'Science' could learn when life was so cheap,

discarded mankind onto the heap.

'Great' governments had met in order to be

as pious as possible, but deaf to the plea ...

of the wandering Jew whose torment to see

how unwelcome he was in the 'Land of the Free'.

The ship onto which so many had stormed

could not find refuge for opinion had formed

that the Jew was a nuisance, an expendable thorn

on whom fate had abandoned its scorn.

They made it to America these "tired and poor"

to discover Liberty's spark shone little more.

Space there was not for them to remain,

what hopes they had cherished were all now in vain!

Dejectedly they limped back to the place

which had expelled them before for the same lack of space.

Stripped naked and paraded for the world to see,

what sickness had afflicted modern Germany?

It didn't take long for the nazis to see

how the world cared not for Jews to be free.

A 'final solution' would quicken the pace

that guaranteed mastery to the 'Aryan' race.

No longer at issue either sufferance or claim,

onto Jewry was placed the burden and blame.

To repair the world, there first must need be

a point at which we accept responsibility

for right against wrong, fiction from fact,

a basis upon which we can morally act.

So why even bother, so distant from then,

what more do we gain, what message we send?

For the sake of the children,

if not, then our own ...

and for them whose lives ...








revised this day 01/27/14
international remembrance day of the holocaust

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