Charles J. Ingerson

MOTHER’S LAMENT

“Quick child!
Quiet now
hold my hand
not much longer,
head up
shoulders back
don’t let them
see you cry,
here lets sing
the song of death
we know it well,
head up
shoulder back
don’t let them
see you cry,
that’s the furnace
just ahead…”

“Sob’s softly…
stroke my being
my baby’s
not able to
take of life
we walk
from the platform
to just ahead
a shower they say
but this lie
known long ago,
naked walk I
my baby
on my breast
my child
on my hand,
we walk
toward death
toward an end
to this torment
called life
taken forever
from me…”

“Look now …
They watch us
just staring
not noticing
my privacy
now stripped,
not like earlier
when rounded up
stripped, raped
laughed at
abused as not human,
no that was long ago
maybe years
hard to tell
the pain beyond
feeling
now they just stare,
where are you husband
would I still be pretty
in your memory
not vacant and void
as being seen just now?”

“What happened
where did I go
what have I become
not even human
to this staring
naked, led as chattel
from pen to pen
only silence now
only silence now
please smile
say you care
let your eyes
look beyond
see what once was
please smile
say you love me
one more time
beyond this silent
stare of death…”