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What I learnt in Berlin.

Updated on August 10, 2016

"Camp Z"


It was a Tuesday and we walked through the dreary gates. You can still feel it on your skin, smell it, breathe it all in. I am standing on a cliff edge at dusk and the sun is gleaming over my shoulders. I can see the light prickle my sweater and the butterflies move along the glistening way. Around me, are gallons of leaves made up into trees, which form rows and eventually disappear into the distance. The sun compass measures the distance from my nervous feet down to the stream of water passing beneath me. I close my eyes to allow all my senses to just feel what I was in. The thin perfectly temperatured breeze came through and the leaves began to flicker. I just tried to feel some sort of a peace with the place. Maybe what they had done as well? Just to get through. Maybe they tricked themselves. Maybe they just repeated false ideas.

"There is just too much beauty in the world to see. To feel. To be."

You could see how they had removed all signs of life within this cage. As I walked in I could only see grey and it was as if it could never be bright here. No matter how sunny the day. Just standing in here was enough to make me feel the onset of sickness. I was becoming more and more unhealthy by the second. I would lose my mind in here, it really is amazing how our mentality is controlled by circumstance. There was still blood smears along the wooden walls, ashes in a bundle, a lingering ghastly smell and a feeling that made my bones tingle. A goose bump for every lost soul.

I slowly strolled through what was known to be a home for many. Millimeters between each cramped bed. Dark rooms kept for punishment. The kitchen was white and bare yet there were some gleams of happiness every now and again. Anyone would lose their mind here. Pictures of carrots, tomatoes, cucumbers dancing with smiles on their faces. It was only slight but made the world of difference to such a man made hell. What large ovens they had for cooking.

I could still see the children running around, making up imaginary games, talking to themselves. Anything to escape this world they were brought into.


ā€œZā€ stood still. It was the end station of the camp. Where they were told they would be going home, back to their loved ones. Atlas they had a glimmer of happiness in that moment. I guess in a twisted way they were being reunited with loved ones. Fake doctors dressed in gowns standing tall at the entry asking you to step forward for your final health check before sending you on your way home.

But no one ever got out of there.

It was made sure of. Once you had walked through the doors there was no hope and there was no way to know. I guess the prisoners thought the smoke was a cosy fire kept on to keep the medical center warm. It was probably best they never found out the truth, maybe the knowledge of what was really happening would have killed them first.

My heart aches for them. It could have been us. It could have been my father. Sometimes I think we try not to feel the world's pain because it would just go too deep. There is too much pain. So we lock it out. But this pain should never be forgotten. So that it can never happen again.

I am standing on a cliff edge at dusk the sun is gleaming over my shoulders. There is no one here but I know I am safe now. My body is shrivelled into a million grey specks but my soul is here. Our souls are here. Forever watching over all the beauty in the world. Its bright lights shine back up at us. They were right. There is too much beauty in the world to see. To feel. To be.

Never again.


A day with Auschwitz so we never forget.

Nazi germany

Were you touched by these events?

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    • kenneth avery profile image

      Kenneth Avery 13 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Amazing; Touching and very sensitive. Thank you for this high-impact hub, Tara.

      Keep up the great work.

    • profile image

      Ausseye 15 months ago

      A touching exploration of what was, and what could be.

    • Glenn Stok profile image

      Glenn Stok 16 months ago from Long Island, NY

      Thank you for writing about this. My grandparents were killed in the Holocaust.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 16 months ago from USA

      Your reflections are poignant. I'm sure it was a humbling trip. We need to remember that if we are not careful history may repeat itself. The victims may be different but it is appalling just the same.

    • Carol Morris profile image

      Carol Morris 16 months ago

      Thanks, this was a beautiful hub.