O that the mute witness will cry out

		  Whom God gave an office and a voice
		  And to spell out the misery of the times,
		  May he freeze in this torturous dungeon? -
		  Has the world come down to a mass grave,
		  A monstrous whirlwind sucking under
		  Myriads of corpses – still a tower stands
		  Out of faith, hope and love constructed,
		  And the sound of a million heart beats
		  Tapers to the question of its whereabouts.
		  The answering, the long desired word
		  Lays ready as a whisper on distant lips
		  Of thousands. But all hells’ depths
		  Broke into uproar, grew to a wild pitch
		  And triumphant that the creator’s image,
		  Set up in the front yard of His heavens,
		  Hit by horror’s tinge of this death infected
		  World, is threatened to gradually fade away.
		  Fear and dismay, rage and doubt’s distress
		  Did not impel the question frozen mouth
		  To open, who’s piercing counter-pitch
		  Would break the noise out of hell’s throat
		  To stress, to stress, it is now enough!
		  Enough of death, of this horrible infamy,
	  	  Which let us forget the fields, left bare,
		  Where the wealth of humanity was sprouting . . .
		  But nobody spoke the word to absolve us,
		  That non-uttered, foreboding word,
		  The storm rages on, blows away all life,
		  Hope’s radiance and earthen happiness . . .
		  O that the mute witness will cry out.   
		  (in internment camp in France 1943)
		  Leo Schmidl (1904 - ) 
		  (translated by U. F. 2019)

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