February 2, 2023


Writer's Showcase


2 min read


In1944 an allied reconnaissance flight took a series of photographs over Auschwitz,while also photographing the nearby factory complex at Monowitz.It was only years later that it was discovered that these pictures were of the extermination camp,during the final frenzy of the murder of437,000 Hungarian Jewish men,women,and children.


Auschwitz from the Air


Flying so high on

the roof of the sky,

firing his cameras

that shall never lie.

Opening a window

on what is below on

the rich Polish earth,

enriched with death.

Levers of light exposing

an artifice of straight lines:

chambers of easy disposing,

for the countless human lives.

This Industrial scale murder,

planned in the minds of men;

rushing to finish their work

before their final surrender.

Over four hundred thousand

murdered in this final frenzy.

There could be no rhyme

to encompass this crime


© D G Moody2022

(Image courtesy of Yad Vashem)

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6 thoughts on “‘AUSCHWITZ FROM THE AIR’

  1. Where I live, people experienced the wrath of the gestapo as they retreated. They have a saying: “We have forgiven, but will not forget”… it is engraved on a memorial to those who died. Your poem ensures these things will never be forgotten.

    1. I read about Auschwitz and I can’t imagine the horrible things those Hungarian Jews experienced in that camp. This poem even makes it sadder that the plane passed and took pictures of a place they didn’t know was a mass murder site. I can only imagine those Hungarian Jews looking up and seeing a plan and thinking maybe someone was finally going to help them. So terrible a crime against humanity. Thank you for this piece, it means that we still remember them even if the crime was committed years ago.

  2. Thanks Allen, for posting my poem on Parapraxis, not least due to its being the only poetry site where the details of image are clear, and how chilling it is to see the prisoners, some newly arrived and on their last journey to the gas chambers. In that, my poem is simply an attempt to point to evil that men and women knowingly inflicted on the innocent. If I may post a link, to the Yad Vashem site, and the ‘Auschwitz Album’, that takes us down there to where the murders were being committed; and it is not easy viewing, but I feel it still needs to be seen.
    And yes, your own neighbours can still testify to the crimes committed there by the Nazi’s.

  3. The evil is so intrusive and incomprehensible, but the poem speaks. Very well written!!
    The reality is so horrible it is not surprising that people should have found it a stumbling block to faith:(
    Keep writing, Thank you!

  4. Thank you Shira for your comments. I still find it hard to comprehend that crime; and we don’t seem to learn, with the murder of ordinary people now taking place in Ukraine.

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