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Wednesday, January 29, 2020


a poem found in the words of Janina Iwanska

by Howie Good

Janina Iwanska, 89, is photographed in her Warsaw apartment. She was sent to Auschwitz after she was separated from her parents at the age of 14 during the Warsaw Uprising in 1944 when the Nazis laid siege to the city. She arrived at the death camp at the height of its exterminations, when the SS guards killed 330,000 people in a span of eight weeks. —Rob Schmitz/NPR, January 27, 2020

We were put into open train cars
and huddled together to keep warm.

When it snowed, we collected it
to drink, because they didn't give us

water. We were in such complete
solidarity that when one of us fell

asleep standing (there was no room
to sit or lie down) none of the others

would steal the snow that accumulated
on her. That snow belonged to her.

Howie Good is the author most recently of Stick Figure Opera: 99 100-word Prose Poems from Cajun Mutt Press. He co-edits the online journals Unbroken and UnLost.