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Reflection of Auschwitz

Those hopefuls that came with keys in their suitcase
and nervous smiles waiting, giddy for the better future,
that they were promised.
Those hopefuls who brought their clothing, brushes and shoes.
Those hopefuls who didn’t know any better,
that soon learnt that it didn’t get better.

Those with small, soft hands within their own
who didn’t think of tracing the lines of their palm,
to memorise the texture.
Parents who dutifully plaited golden locks in ribbon,
only to see it fall to a slate floor.
Small hands age quickly in fire.

You who were too weak to pick up your feet,
yet strong enough to wear away stone.
To bore marks into the ground with calloused heels.
You who were strong enough to stay stood,
When your family fell by your side.

She who gossiped on her lunch break.
She who knew that the list she compiled;
Was a hit list.
She who laughed on her days off,
She who had days off.

He who laughed as they begged for more food,
as they begged for freedom.
his fingers that condemned the weak with a point,
his fingers that were proficient with guns.
He who’d stop escape, if the barbed wire didn’t.

Those that watched as the Jews were taken.
As the Roma, homosexuals, disabled were taken.
Those who knew that lives were taken,
yet snitched on religious neighbours.
Those who were too scared to question.

Those of the 1.3 Million people who died there.
Those with names and favourite colours.
Those with pets, friends and favourite foods
with favourite books, places and songs.
Those who’s noses crinkled as they laughed.

Those who lived to tell their stories;
And 1.3 Million who didn’t.

Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Review Request (Direction): 
What did you think of my title?
How was my language use?
What did you think of the rhythm or pattern or pacing?
How does this theme appeal to you?
How was the beginning/ending of the poem?
Is the internal logic consistent?
Last few words: 
Written for a holocaust display after a visit to Auschwitz
Editing stage: 

Comments

...but i'm sure the majority knew what lied ahead, grammatical error intended.
good write, but more homework, methinks.

Best wishes.... val.

Hiya thanks for reading it :) I was part of the Lessons From Auschwitz Project where we were given a guided tour around both Auschwitz and Birkenau and a bunch of information packs . We were told that for the first few years of the holocaust some communities were unaware of what was happening at the camps and willingly paid for their train tickets there as they were promised better jobs and better housing situation. This is why many of the victims brought their nicest clothes and cooking utensils as if they were moving and their house keys as they thought they would eventually return.

Not all those who wander are lost - JR Tolkien

- Tyjana :)

author comment

Well written and a tribute to those who left but didn't know the reason for leaving, yet will live with us always.
Yours, Grandy, xxxxx

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Thank you xxx
Sorry for the late reply apparently I had seen the comment and forgot oops :P

Not all those who wander are lost - JR Tolkien

- Tyjana :)

author comment

about to say that the use of so many [Those] in this work wasn't that great n idea, but then I asked myself why? " Because it seemed to diminish the people that you spoke of and their hopes and dreams and the things they brought for a new start. Then I realized, that that was exactly what this piece needed! It did that and made it clear that is what was done to these people! I like it!
~ Geezer.
.

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Sorry for the late reply! I'm glad that you liked it :) The objective of the poem was to show the extent of the holocaust as our brief for the project was to humanize it by making it clear that all the statistics and figures were actual people so I'm glad you read it as you did and questioned yourself! Thank you :)

Not all those who wander are lost - JR Tolkien

- Tyjana :)

author comment
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