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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