poet Tadeusz Rozewicz

Tadeusz Rozewicz

The Survivor

I am twenty-four
led to slaughter
I survived.

The following are empty synonyms:
man and beast
love and hate
friend and foe
darkness and light.

The way of killing men and beasts is the same
I've seen it:
truckfuls of chopped-up men
who will not be saved.

Ideas are mere words:
virtue and crime
truth and lies
beauty and ugliness
courage and cowardice.

Virtue and crime weigh the same
I've seen it:
in a man who was both
criminal and virtuous.

I seek a teacher and a master
may he restore my sight hearing and speech
may he again name objects and ideas
may he separate darkness from light.

I am twenty-four
led to slaughter
I survived.


Translated by Adam Czerniawski

Poem Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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Comments about The Survivor by Tadeusz Rozewicz

  • Dutendra ChamlingDutendra Chamling (11/29/2015 4:56:00 AM)

    ....Ideas are mere words:
    virtue and crime
    truth and lies
    beauty and ugliness
    courage and cowardice....

    Beautiful poems.........!

    Report Reply
    1 person liked.
    2 person did not like.

Rating Card

3,1 out of 5
25 total ratings
rate this poem



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