Babi Yar


Not like the ravines of old,
Not verdantly green or beautiful as gold.
This ravine is blood-soaked, and its name:
Babi Yar, the Jews' and Communists' bane.
Here they come, in lines of two,
The wretched faces of the Jews.
They like down, quaking in fear,
As a Nazi soldiers puts guns to their ears.
Tears filling their eyes, the Jews say
Their last goodbyes,
As gunshots echo, and their souls
Fly into the skies.

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This Poems Story

I am fifteen years old and live in San Francisco with my family. Last spring I wrote a poem regarding the Holocaust for a school project. My humanities teacher Liza Gleason gave our class the assignment of writing a biography on a poet. I chose Emma Lazarus because of her Jewish heritage and because of the civil rights she supported. We were also asked to write a poem inspired by our chosen poet. I thought that if Lazarus was alive during the Holocaust, she would have written a poem similar to mine.