It was almost strange to think that these unfortunate living corpses had a life before Ravensbrück. These thoughts did not sit easily with him.
I am nineteen and I have seen things that I am sure are worse than any battle hardened bastard ever will. I have seen women tortured beyond hope, without even a finger being placed on them! I have seen women who have had their children murdered in cold blood, right in front of them. The women double over in agony, writhing on the ground in devastation. I’ve heard them incomprehensibly screaming for help, but not managing once to complete a sentence. They choke on their own despair. As the guards walk off, we run to move the woman in hysterics from the icy ground. But all we bring back to the barracks are her physical remains. For each woman, her soul, her heart, her inner being is destroyed. One held on to me with a vice like grip. Just as a small child clutches its muma’s hand for comfort, so did she. Clutching my arms and hands as if this grasp could keep her anchored to her body, so that she did not plunge and lose herself in a sea of black grief that could drown us all.
The soldier cringed in disgust. His sense of morality was disturbed. She was only nineteen, and she had suffered through things that he had only heard of. Something as catastrophically horrific as this shouldn’t happen to anyone. This woman, Katya, was just a few years younger than himself. He would have liked to have known that she was still alive. He clung very strongly to that thought as he braced himself to read on.
The other women, Oszchra, Weronika, Ada, Doroata, Franciszka, Halina, along with the many others who died or are dying as I write this, have all lost their children here. On more than one occasion have they lain screaming in their bunks, moaning their names. Ozschra’s youngest daughter shared my name. When she died, the hysterical screaming of my name over and over again, unnerved me in every way possible.
Given that I was not one of the fortunate ones to be placed along the gutter, my eventual death is promised. Not by the chance of falling bombs, or collapsing buildings. But by the pigs that are, by some insane power, titling themselves asKinder der Gotter. Children of the Gods.
Children of the Gods. For all the months that he had been on duty, he had never heard that term. He dropped the papers into his lap. He raised his hands to his face and laughed. They didn’t look like the hands of a holy healer. It was tremendously arrogant that anyone here could compare themselves to the child of a holy entity. He too doubted, at times, whether the guards that had worked there had any conscience. Ravensbrück was the place farthest away from any heaven. In fact, the units who administered to the camps were structured within the SS. They were theTotenkopfuerbande, The Order of the Death’s Head.If there was a God, he wasn’t here. Neither were any of his children.
I spent many months in Lodz, but I cannot waste what precious paper I have recounting what happened there because that, in contrast, is insignificant. It was like a training exercise. Resilience is rendered useless here. They spare us no compassion, not an ounce of civility.
Our, ‘orientation’ to Ravensbrück, did nothing short of destroy some of the remaining illusions of hope held by most of the women in my transport. I was not one of them. I came to this place with no hope of reprieve, as many of the others did.
“ZWEI LINIEN, TWO LINES,”was screamed once, and the women of my transport quickly arranged themselves in two haphazard lines.
“LASSEN SIE IHR GËPACK,LEAVE YOUR LUGGAGE.”
The lines began to creep forward, reluctantly stepping over the remaining luggage as we did so.
It dawned on him that this girl would never know what happened to her luggage. It was plausible that hers may have been one of the suitcases sitting in the back of the truck that had driven by him earlier this morning.