Treasure Island

gershon hepner

(5 3 38 / leipzig)


Even on most lofty thrones
one’s only sitting on one’s ass,
and though our mouths make pleasant tomes
the other end emits foul gas,
which is acceptable unless
you think those who died when forced
to breathe it in when SOS
saved no souls in the Holocaust.

Gabriele Annan reviews “Trains of Thought: Memories of a Stateless Youth, ” by Victor Brombert (Norton) in “Surviving, ” an article on books by Reuben Ainsztein and Ruth Kluger as well as Brombert, all three holocaust survivors (NYR, November 7,2001) . Brombert quotes Montaigne when he says:

I often wondered if it was because I could recognize the child in me that I find it so hard to take myself seriously. Sometimes I tease myself into believing that mine is a case of arrested development, but if seriousness means acting grave and important, then I am not ashamed to have been able to make fun of my occasional esprit de sérieux. The imp [another imp] of pretentiousness should be thwarted. I laugh every time I remember Montaigne’s wonderful observation that even on the loftiest throne one is still sitting on one’s ass. No, I resist taking myself seriously, except perhaps in my deeper allegiance and fears.

I wrote the second quatrain of this poem on 2/10/09, when compiling my Shoah poems. It had been categorized as a Shoah poem only because it was inspired by a review of a book on Holocaust survivors. I now transform the poem into a bitterly sardonic reflection on the Cyklon B that caused the death of millions of Jews.


Submitted: Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (gas by gershon hepner )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Top Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  9. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  10. Invictus
    William Ernest Henley Updates

New Poems

  1. Mama's Black Breast, Ozioma Anieto
  2. Big bee, Dr PJ Raj Kamal
  3. Heroe, Portia Lane
  4. She, Anil Karki
  5. We, the great family, Anil Karki
  6. My Problem With Words, Valsa George
  7. Purchased Palsy, Pranab K. Chakraborty
  8. Just stupid, Pranab K. Chakraborty
  9. To Efe Benjamin, Electric Lady
  10. You chose the gift above the giver!, PARTHA SARATHI PAUL

Poem of the Day

poet William Wordsworth


I AM not One who much or oft delight
To season my fireside with personal talk.--
Of friends, who live within an easy walk,
Or neighbours, daily, weekly, in my sight:
...... Read complete »

[Hata Bildir]