Kristallnacht

A poem about something that no one can deny happened.


 

Like a million bells tinkling in some distant Hell
the window shattered, splintered, fell
on to the street where Ira Levin stood
purveyor of Kosher meat and other food.

He does not try to flee but simply stands
His wife scoops up the glass in blooded hands,
and crying falls down to her knees
now God, is the time to send the Maccabees.

The crowd are ordinary folk that they once knew
Who now turn away and spit the vile word Jew!
And as they move from shop to shop and house to house
They shatter glass, daub slogans “Juden Raus”

An insane pestilence spreads throughout the city
No sympathy in angry eyes, no pity.
No shame except of those who hear them shout
Juden Raus! Juden Raus! Jews Get out!

Shattered glass covers the city streets like snow
They beat, they spit and shouting on they go
Their hoards gaining numbers, gaining pace
to daub another house with hated star or grotesque foreign face.

And no one knew or sensed what was to come.
Like empty window frames the victims dumb
Fathers mothers, children, husbands, wives
bend to the task of mending shattered lives

And all the world is silent as this comes to pass
it does not hear the sound of broken glass.
Nor will it hear six million souls in pain
It cannot bear the burden of that shame.

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critique and comments welcome.
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Yutka

the most horrid event, never should be forgotten! A neighbour threw Hitler’s portrait out of the window, but his wife was so afraid….Not all Germans were evil.. But, of course, many were

Slovitt

Chrissy: wanted to say i’d read, and liked your poem. Swep

Ionicus

A very accurate portrait of terrible events that cannot, as you rightly say, be denied although a minority of deniers sadly have tried to do just that. People of my generation still a vivid memory of that tragic time but we must remain vigilant that this kind of situation doesn’t recur. There are fanatic extremists around nowadays determined to create chaos.
The poem is skillfully crafted in good rhyming couplets and makes the point forcefully. Well done.
Best, Luigi.

Mitch

Well written!

Pommer

Hi, Chrissy, What a well written poem ,and what an accurate description of that awful time. I did not witness the actual fire, but I witnessed the fire service clearing up aftermath ,and some of the poor people who tried to save some of their religious items from the synagogue or as it was known as the Temple.I was only twelve years old at the time, and was really only interested in the fire engines.like any youngster would be.It was not until later in my life that I realised the injustice and the crime that was inflicted on the Jewish… Read more »

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