Sunday, October 27, 2019

Remembering a Visit to Yad Vashem

Rabbi Jonathan Cahn of Beth Israel Worship Center, Wayne, NJ, 
will lead another pilgrimage to Israel next week.
The poem I've selected to share with you today is a sobering remembrance
from our visit to the holocaust museum in Jerusalem,
during my last pilgrimage in 2006.

Janusz Korczak & the orphan children.
Photo credit:

Israel Pilgrimage--2006

We are given an hour, only an hour
to walk through on our own—

It’s quiet
Barely any talking
No smiling

People move slowly
observing, listening
some brush away tears
some shake their heads

We walk along the Path
of Righteous Gentiles
hesitate at trees
planted in honor
of Oscar Schindler
of Corrie TenBoom

We see shoes of the dead, eyeglasses
photographs, paintings

The eternal flame shudders
as we swallow hard at the words:
Never Again

Outside, we pause at the bronze
of Janusz Korczak embracing
the orphan children—
the ones he accompanied
into a crematorium

At the Children’s Memorial
the darkness is assuaged
by so many mirrored reflections
of flickering candles
We read—
1,500,000 children

An hour, only an hour
is even too much
for us to bear

Maude Carolan Pych

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