acquiescence

Wide-eyed and innocent he stands

transfixed,

on the vessels of scrutiny.

He watches the mindless precision of the Brown Shirts

as they march to the death of their own free will,

structurally waving goodbye to their humanity.

He holds the hand of his friend.

The pretty one, with the dark eyes and playful curls.

Having been each other’s playground protection

for eight years,

they cling to each other for assurance of familiarity

in a sea of unfamiliar thoughts, symbols and insignia.

The power, passion and position

in the emotionless eyes of the marching puppets

cause his pale blue eyes to flicker.

Scraps of his dignity flash before him,

forcing him to relive the mortification of

juvenile incidents in school corridors.

Seeing the wild admiration in his eyes,

she intently fastens her hold on him.

Desperately trying to keep the thought

of her presence in his

Impressionable and volatile mind.

Visions cloud her deep brown eyes.

Nightmares of a young blonde-haired,

pale blue-eyed man

in an impenetrable mud green suit of armour

send shivers of terror through her.

Her love, her light,

marches raptly in front of her.

With every orchestrated step and salute

he loses fragments of his compassion

and shards of his courage.

Coming back to reality,

she no longer feels his warmth on her hand.

In front of her she notices

an outstretched, raised right arm,

structurally waving goodbye to his humanity.

– Robyn Paterson

this is a poem i wrote for a history assignment. we were asked to creatively respond to a visit to our local Holocause Centre.

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