Barbara Kobos-Kaminska--Polish/Swedish

Originally from Poland, Barbara Kobos Kaminska now resides in Sweden. Her work appears in contemporary Polish journals and she is a featured writer of Shoah, an internet site dedicated to the art, poetry and essays of occupied Poland in the years 1929-1945. 


Do Not Know

I do not know
when to embark on the journey
of your youth.
I do not know
where to seek the traces
of the Holocaust
in the land full of
ashes and blood.
I hear fear.
I hear crying.
I hear screams.


In the Permanence of Unforgetfulness 

You still see
her shining hair
interlaced in a braid,
her palm searching for
a palm's warmth,
her eyes trustfully looking
from the face of a child's fear,
when violently separated,
forcibly stripped off
her humanity
she stepped lonely
towards the termination
of her life.
The Well-Known Journey Into The Unknown

A transport of children in cattle railcars,
with but a slice of black bread and a bundle
filled with the baggage of their childhood.
In this uninterrupted journey,
the dawn of the rising day pushed slowly
through the small barred car’s window.
Then the train suddenly stopped thus
causing screams of the panicked children
being torn away from their mother's arms.
The well-known journey into the unknown.
Where to and what for?
Without mother, father, and God.
The Terminal Station

The transport lasted days and nights
on a train packed with exhausted
women clinging to their meagerbundles.
Nothing but screams and wailings
escaped the chock-full railcars.
The train slowly came to a stop
on the middle track.
It was the terminal station—