I've lived in the ghetto here for more than a year.
In Terezin, in the black town now,
And when I remember my old home so dear,
I can love it more than I did, somehow.
Ah, home, home.
Why did they tear me away?
Here the weak die easy as a feather
And when they die, they die forever.
I'd like to go back home again,
It makes me think of sweet spring flowers.
Before, when I used to live at home,
It never seemed so dear and fair.
I remember now those golden days...
Byt maybe I'll be going there soon again.
People walk along the street,
You see at once on each you meet
That there's ghetto here,
A place of evil and of fear.
There's little to eat and much to want,
Where bit by bit, it's horror to live.
But no one must give up!
The world turns and times change.
Yet we all home the time will come
When we'll go home again.
Now I know how dear it is
And often I remember it.
The author of this poem is unknown, but it is most likely that it was a child prisoner in the Terezin ghetto. Although the author speaks of returning home, it is unlikely that he or she survived the Holocaust. Of the 140,000 people who were imprisoned in Terezin, 38,000 died there and an additional 83,000 died at other concentration camps.
Terezin, and the concentration camp located within it, Theresienstadt, was a central location from which Jews were shipped to extermination camps such as Auschwitz. Additionally, the Nazis designed the ghetto and concentration camp to look pleasant, in order to fool the Red Cross. As such, many artists, musicians, and intellectuals were deported to Terezin, and much of the Holocaust art and music that has survived was created in Terezin.