Warsaw’s Ash

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere The ceremony of innocence is drowned; The best lack all conviction, while the worst Are full of passionate intensity.

W.B Yeats
Self edited, and taken by My Life As A Photographer

White and storm cloud ash, mingle with the forbidding thunderheads, above.
A remnant of the dead, calling out to the living to be revenged.
Running, we ran from the haughty laughs, of the Dictators ragging fires.
Fleeing, we ran from the cold clicks of their barrels, on our sweaty brows.
Escaping, we ran from from this hellish earth, with one pull of the hangman’s noose.
We didn’t stay, when our comrades body’s cried out from the swirling, pools of blood; for vengeance.
We, all where the Dictators pawns; for him to move as he pleased.
We, all where the scum under his boot, to be thrown to the fire, like a heap of dirty rags.
We, all where the victims of his hate and unjustness.
And in the end, we all would be squash in the Dictators fist.
With the mighty, rush of the Dictators propaganda, are fate’s where intertwined.
Yet, while the dead get their flowers, us—the living must continue to walk through hells flames; with our rewards at bay.
Our destiny is death, and another enemy’s head our compensate.
When we kill, we do not for blood, but to take our country out of the dictators palm.
And to show the world our human hearts, beating, under our gnarled flesh.
Yet, as I lift my face to the falling ash, gliding down, like millions of tiny, shot-down ace’s, falling, from fleet of pipers.
And see the open mouths of the ravished flames, eating at my home, till Warsaw is all but, charcoaled corps and skeleton ruins.
I wonder when God will seem fit to end, this ragging, tide of blood-shead and anarchy.


Joy Tiberend

My inspiration for this poem came relatively, to a tragic date in history: known as the Warsaw up-rising and the burning of Warsaw, during the holocaust, in Poland, 1943. The up-rising begin in a Polish ghetto, where, when the Jewish people inside where being “evacuated” they refused to be hulled off, ‘like sheep to the slater’ and rallied together to fight back.

The ghetto residence, surprisingly manage to hold of the Nazis’ for about a month, from April 19 – May 16. Which was far unanticipated, saying how the Nazi’s far outnumbered them in terms of manpower and weaponry.

Thought, sadly May 16 was their down-fall. The Nazi’s ended up firmly taking hold of the Ghetto and dragging off an estimated 50,000 fighters to extermination or labor camps. Though, some of the fighters managed to escape through the sewer, where they joined Partisans…others committed suicide, instead of being hulled off to death camps.
Proximately 7,000 Jewish lives where taken that day, thought the Nazi’s didn’t get away clean, it is said, that they too lost several hundred men in the uprising.

After the up-rising, Hitler and his SS, decided to make an example of the city, which they had long since selected for major reconstruction as part of their planned ‘Germanization’ of Central Europe. (Ironically, the destruction Warsaw, had been planned even before the start of WWII. The uprisings was really, just a convenient excuse to burn it; like Helen of Troy.) Their big plan was to simply to, whip Warsaw of the face of the earth, and sadly….in the end they exceeded in wiping out a major majority of Poland’s capital. 80–90% of Warsaw’s buildings where deliberately demolished, burned, or stolen of an immense part of its cultural heritage.

Ann Frank, wrote her thoughts in her diary, on the eve of Warsaw’s destruction: “Almost all Warsaw is a sea of flames. To set houses afire is the surest way to deprive the insurgents of their hiding places. When we crush the uprising, Warsaw will get what it deserves – complete annihilation.”

Through, my poem I tried to being out the heart-wrenching and melancholic emotions, that would of been felt, by looking into the soul of an Anonymous, survivor, who fought with their life for freedom, against one man I called the ‘Dictator’.

It was a poem of guilt—a guilt that ate away at the soul with every heart beat of my survivor. A guilt so strong, it wooed this Anonymous character, to write a poem; so the world might look through Warsaw’s ash, and see streakers of the brave-hearted Warriors, living and dead; who fought for the purposes of freedom and unity.

For further information on Warsaw:

https://www.history.com/topics/world-war-ii/warsaw-ghetto-uprising

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warsaw_Ghetto_Uprising

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Destruction_of_Warsaw

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warsaw_Ghetto

—Joy Tiberend

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