Carol Dine





  after Violette Szabo*


  Behind the lines, they catch me breaking their code.

  In Ravensbruck women's camp, they break my ribs,

  force open my thighs. They starve me, shear my

  long black hair. I am not a Jew. My cipher name is Louise.  


  On my back on the beating table. They lean in with

  sour breath: "Tell us, and then you can sleep." I will not tell,

  I whisper to Tania, my daughter. Tomorrow at dawn,

  l stand before the executioner. Behind my closed eyes,

  my parachute opens again, a white petunia floating over Limoges.  


  *Violette Szabo, agent with the French Resistance, was awarded

  the George Cross and the Croix de Guerre, bestowed posthumously.



  (Originally posted  November 18, 2010)


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