Warsaw September 1944
The woman lights the last candle
Measures time by the stub of wax
How long before the rats grow bolder
Waiting in the fringe shadows
Pink noses raised, inquiring
How long since they bricked the sewer
How long since the infant’s last whimper
How long since her breasts ran dry?
”Wait Minka, we will return”
Echo drops on the floor of slime
The flame of sanity, burning lower
She rocks the covered bundle
Sings a remembered lullaby
W górze tyle gwiazd,
W dole tyle miast.
Gwiazdy miastom dają znać,
Że dzieci musza spać...
So many stars above,
So many cities below
Stars are giving signs to cities,
That children must go to sleep!