Tuesday, 26 August 2014

One Less Survivor by Naomi Elana Zener

One less survivor walks amongst us now.
Beyond the pale you triumphed somehow.
Imbued with courage from seraphs ethereal,
Prolonging paternal life against the imperial.
Kith wrested from the Earth, an orphan anew.
Trapped like vermin for being marked a ‘Jew.’
Steadfast endurance, Reaper’s chime kept at bay,
An hour, a lifetime. The will to survive another day.
Release, freedom granted, skeletal ghost emerged,
Haunted by horrors, memories never to be purged.
To no more than a child, a new life was born,
Replacing all that was lost and from arms torn.
Marriage, cherubs of hope, renaissance offered,
Distant shores granted not all that was proffered.
Many blessings bestowed, but life’s struggles ensued,
Tears rolled, laughter came, mind remained shrewd.
Generations sprung forth to transcend family perished,
Matriarch to the future, a role clung to and cherished.
Filling the void, the operatic voice lyrically chanted,
Self-proclaimed angel, to all your protection granted.
The seventh age held at bay for nearly nine decades,
Thrust upon you infirmity with its tsunami cascades.
The water finally calmed, up the Styx your soul ferried,
Liberated from torment, corporal remains to be buried.
Left behind, love’s legacy indelibly marked in us all.
Guiding lessons proclaiming to forever walk tall.
Powering sun, moon, and stars to continue to shine,
Forever tethered, inhabiting my soul, your esprit divine.

Author note: This is not satire. I wrote this in honour of my Holocaust-surviving Bubbie, who passed away on Sunday August 24, 2014, who helped raise me. This is a tribute to her.

© 2014. Naomi Elana Zener. All Rights Reserved.


  1. I am so sorry for your loss, Naomi. And this is a wonderful tribute.

  2. You captured her life and times perfectly with this poem.
    She would be very proud that you wrote this in her honour.