. . . . ..In January 1942, fifteen men sit in a room
discussing the “final solution” to a question
disguised as a people. They compete to sound,
to make the bigger splash as they plan the best way
to test out and up through extermination.
. . . . . Today, a theater Holocaust puppet sits silently
perched in a café window on our souls while two folk
talk business as usual. Sallow eyes watch, empty of life.
He’s all wood and paint, chipped thin to crack
as his gears and joints creak beneath their weighty worth.
The daily litany patrols back and forth, casual, absurd,
without notice for the watcher marked for vigil in felt
and papier mache, his only armor a yellow star,
a ghost light that shines brighter than the sun setting
beyond brick glass and wire.
. . . . . If I trace the life lines from his making
to his playing, I can see him rise, hear him speak
to tell his story in a whispered secret faint as the smell
of cold coffee, but it’s just a show. A masquerade
that everyone has been told and should know.
Though they somehow don’t. seem. to. No, this boy,
this metonymy in spare parts needs others to speak
in order to be heard—and not just for him,
not just for his, because he owns us all. He appears,
like the tree in the forest, to strike a chord,
displacing air, making waves, without a word.
Christina Dendy is a freelance writer and editor who authors K-12 social studies and other educational material as well as poetry, fiction, and general musings. She is also the founding editor (and ne’erdowell) of Mock Turtle Zine in Dayton, Ohio. She lives there with her husband, her two children, and a host of other critters.
–Photo of Puppets by C Dendy
–Art by Jan Rockar
–Art by Plamen Stoev
–Art by Joel Hohner