A Poem for Holocaust Remembrance Day, 2016

Red Danube

I see my grandmother
Lying on her hospital bed
Thinking she’s back home
The youngest of eight

Walking an hour each way to school
With three girls and two boys
Making jokes
Throwing rocks into mossy ponds
Her feet massaged in the evenings
Dressed up as Queen Esther
At the carnival
Sitting in Papa’s soft lap
Embraced by the puffs of smoke
Coming from his pipe
Listening to Berty
Making love
With his violin
The challah in the oven

She lies in her bed
Staring at he ceiling
Nurses cold unfeeling
Waiting for her to die

She doesn’t talk to anyone
Her thoughts are incoherent
The light in the room disturbs her eyes
The room sinks under her

Her mother sings a lullaby

Bye bye world
I’m leaving you behind
The blue Danube turns red
Berty’s shoes floating
Upside down

The violin pulls her away
Floating above the tiny shoes
She’s lost in eager silence

April 30, 2015
© David Mandler

David Mandler’s short story, “The Loft,” is available on amazon.com.  http://www.amazon.com/Loft-David-Mandler-ebook/dp/B00E4WONNA/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1462375125&sr=8-2&keywords=David+Mandler