Kelly M. Houle – The Making of “A Dream” – International Holocaust Remembrance Day


I want to welcome welcome you all to our International Holocaust Remembrance Day. My name is Kathy Krzys and I am the Rare- the curator of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Collection that is part of Distinctive Collections in ASU library. This event commemorates several significant happenings. First, is the Lambert Memorial Rare Book Fund which provided the funding for the purchase of Kelly Houle’s books which are on display today in the back of the room, and I hope you take some time to look at them before you leave. This fund was named for former ASU professor of English, JJ Lambert, a linguist who in pre-internet days hosted a “grammar hotline” from his Tempe home. Lambert passed away in 1992. Donations from individuals to his fund are used to purchase rare books for ASU Library Special Collections. Ten items have been acquired to date. Past titles include: A Historical Study of the E-Vowel Accented Syllables in English published in 1893, Picturesque Word Origins: With Fort-five Illustrative Drawings published in 1933, and my favorite, A Rhetorical Grammar: In Which the Common Improprieties in Reading and Speaking Are Detected, and the True Sources of Elegant Pronunciation Are Pointed Out. That was published in 1814. I want to extend a special thank you to Kristen LaRue Sandler, the Director of Communications for the Department of English, for facilitating the use of these funds and for her suggestions for this year’s acquisitions. Thank You, Kristen. Secondly, I want to celebrate the addition of Kelly’s publications to the ASU Artist’s Books Collection. Artist’s Books, just in case you don’t know, are works of art that utilize the form of the book. They are often published in small editions, they utilize a wide range of forms, including concertinas or foldouts. Kelly’s Artist’s Books are unique because of their format and size. They will provide great insights for Book Arts classes and scholars frequently accessing this collection (now numbering over 250 items). Artist’s Books also frequently comment on social and political issues, as does Kelly’s latest book which we feature today. Most importantly, we are here today to join with our colleagues around the world who are remembering the horrors of the Holocaust and honoring the brave individuals who died or survived to tell their story. Some of these stories are told in the books on display today from the East Core Book Collection, and in the papers from survivor Gerda Klein, and I also invite you to see those items in the back of the room. Lastly, it is my great honor to present Alberto Rios who will introduce his former student, Kelly Houle. Alberto Rios is a Regents Professor in the Department of English at Arizona State University, where he has taught creative writing since 1982, and where he holds the further distinction of the Kathryn C. Turner Endowed Chair in English. In 2013 he was designated the Inaugural Arizona Poet Laureate and in 2014 was elected to the Board of Chancellors of the Academy of American Poets. He currently directs the Virginia G Piper Center for Creative Writing. He is the author of 10 books and chapbooks of poetry, three collections of short stories, and a memoir. He is the recipient of the Western Literature Association Distinguished Achievement Award, the Arizona Governor’s Arts Award, fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, the Walt Whitman Award, the Western States Book Award for Fiction, six Pushcart Prizes in both poetry and fiction, and inclusion in The Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry, as well as over 300 other national and international literary anthologies. His work is regularly taught and translated, and has been adapted to dance and both classical and popular music. But I know him more because he wrote a poem called “Inside Chants,” and worked with a bookmaker, Linda Smith, to create “A Most Unusual Artist’s Book,” which is one of the most viewed items in Rare Books and Manuscripts. Alberto Rios. Thank you, thank you so much, and thank you everyone for being here. Welcome. Bienvenidos, todos. Also velkomenn, [unknown], bienvenue, [unknown] aloha, shalom. So many ways to say so simple a thing you’d think that as human beings we could have gotten this straight by now, but we’re all different. We’re all different, and I take that as a good thing but historically, that’s not always been a good thing. Today is a both somber and celebratory occasion: Holocaust Remembrance Day. I think “remembrance” is one way to say this, also “not forgetting” is a slightly different but equally important way to say what we should feel. In my culture we have Dia de los Muertos: Day of the Dead. Which I will tell you that in a heartbeat changes its meaning when we talk about not the Day of the Dead, but the day of my dead. That changes everything. And I think today we’re going to see a little bit of that from Kelly, who will talk about this quite eloquently through her art. I- incidentally Pete Fredlake is here. We tried to get some Commemoration of this event from the National Holocaust Museum, however, the government shut down believe it or not affected this. Sad to say but there we go. I want to say Kelly Houle is a poet, artist, and award-winning bookmaker based in Mesa, Arizona. She is the founder of Books of- Books of Kell’s Press, a non-profit fine-art press that aims to promote artistic beauty and intellectual openness; the ideas and values of Renaissance humanism through the creation and distribution of small handmade limited edition original art, and educational materials. The press produced the editions we’re celebrating here today. Houle became interested in bookmaking while in the Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing Program in poe- she was in poetry at program at Arizona State University, Which she graduated from in 2005. Her work lives at the intersection of art and science. In fact, she is a former science teacher having earned a bachelor’s degree in atmospheric science from the University of Arizona in 1991. She is at work on a long-term project illustrating Darwin’s “On the Origin of Species”. I’ve been lucky enough to write on that particular piece and view some of the work from that. It is like the illustrate- the great illustrated manuscripts of years past reinvented in the 21st century and it is a attention to detail that is stunning. The goal is to produce an illuminated manuscript that pairs traditional calligraphy and painting with one of history’s greatest works of scientific literature. Her paintings and drawings are in public and private collections around the world including in the United States, Canada Mexico, Belgium, Switzerland… She studied painting and drawing at Scottsdale Artists’ School and Desert Botanical Gardens, and is currently a student of Botanical Art in the Distant Learning Program offered by a Society of Botanical Artists in London. She is a fellow of the Linnaean Society of London, and a member of the American Society of Botanical Artists, the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators, and Oil Painters of America. She’s going to be talking today about a book: a manuscript, a text, some words written by Abramek Koplowicz. She’ll explain the story of this, how it came to be. But Kelly, let me just finish by saying as a caring, considerate, meticulous artist and she responds to the great gifts of the world with great gifts of her own. Welcome, Kelly. Thank you everybody for being here. There are maybe better ways to spend an afternoon than hearing about this kind of a story, but I’m glad you’re here. Thank you for for giving up your time to be here to remember this poet today. I have to say I have to tell this story, late last semester my ten year old son told me excitedly that at school he learned that he would be giving a presentation and he needed to choose a character and it had to be a famous Arizonian. And at school they picked their famous Arizonian and he said, “Do you know who I picked? Do you know who I picked?” And I said “No. Who did you pick?” And he said “Alberto Rios.” I said, “Alberto Rios? Really? You chose Alberto Rios?” He said “Yes.” I said, “Did you know that he was my professor at ASU when I was a student there?” “No, he was?” He was shocked. “And do you know that we have all of his books in our house?” “No.” And so we got to read-I looked through all of all of the books to find something that I could share with him and that he could share with his fifth grade class, and we ended up reading the lemon story, which maybe some of you know, I’m sure many of you know. And if you haven’t read the lemon story you you need to do that, but it’s a story about what can get lost in translation and all the things that can be gained by trying. And we’ve gained so much in the translation of the poet that we’re here to remember today. First, I’d like to thank Kristen LaRue Sandler for orchestrating this event, and the ASU Department of English Katherine Krzys, and the ASU Library, and anyone who’s contributed to the Department of English Rare Book Fund. I’m truly thankful. Also the ASU school of Historical Philosophical and Religious Studies, thank you to to all of you for this opportunity; to share the making of “A Dream”, a book of selected poems by Abramek Koplowicz. And the story behind these poems is breathtaking, it’s literally breathtaking. It has been for me I’ve often had to catch my breath just thinking about how these poems landed in my hands, almost 9,000 miles and 75 years away from the bright imagination of a young boy who was writing during the last year of his childhood. A childhood that was taken from him and one to two million other children during the Holocaust. But thanks to a stepbrother that Abramek never knew, we have his poems and his writings which have been lovingly translated into English by Malgorzata Koraszewska and Sarah Lawson. Sarah also wrote a beautiful introduction for this edition, which I’ll be reading from in parts. This isn’t my computer so This is the cover of the book. I did the illustrations and the book is hand letterpress printed and I’ll talk about that process later. These are the translators, Malgorzata with her her cat always on her lap. She is in Poland. She lives in Poland. She’s a professional translator; she translates all kinds of science writing books. She’s translated the work of Steven Pinker into Polish, Richard Dawkins, Matthew Ridley. And Sarah Lawson is also an accomplished translator. And their biographies are in the back of the book for you to see and there’s a copy back there to look at. This is the only known photograph of Abramek with his parents. He was born February 18, 1930 in Łódź in central Poland. These are the names of his parents and I’m afraid I will not say them correctly. Is it Yochet? Gittel and Mendel Koplowicz. Abramek completed two years of school before he and his family were imprisoned by the Nazis in the Łódź Ghetto. Abramek was in the Ghetto from age nine to fourteen. He and his mother were both killed in Auschwitz in 1944. You can see that he was a blond blue-eyed child but because he was born to Jewish parents Abramek Koplowicz spent the second half of his childhood confined with his mother and father in the Łódź Ghetto, later named the Litzmannstadt Ghetto after general Karl von Litzmann, who was a commander of the German army in a follow of Hitler during the Battle of Łódź in 1914. Imprisoned by the Nazis, Abramek’s father was put to work making cardboard boxes for the Germans while Abramek was forced to labor in a shoe making workshop. Sometimes Abramek would show up at his father’s workshop to entertain the other workers by reading poetry and satirical plays that he had written and versed. Abramek’s stepbrother believes that this photograph may be of Abramek. He does not know for sure, but it was a photograph he had in his collection. So what a delight that must have been to have- must have been to them as they worked worked away for no wages and little food what a joy that must have been to bask for a few minutes in the creative mind of this boy, who himself was probably hungry and weary from his own forced labor. Yet somehow in this fenced-in disease-ridden four square kilometer area, which was the only life you would ever know, Abramek wrote bright, hopeful, observant poems. With his poems and stories he was able to lift the spirits of others. The Litzmannstadt Ghetto was created February 8th in 1940 in the poorest and most neglected part of north Łódź. It was a hermitically sealed forced labor camp. And to give you an idea of the conditions, I’m going to read a short passage from a book. It’s called “We Couldn’t Understand Why: The Plight and Experiences of the Children of the Holocaust.” This is a collection of childhood memories of Holocaust survivors who were in the Holocaust as children. These English translations were also done by Sarah and Malgorzata. It’s part of a five book series and they are giving away these books free to anyone who wants a copy and you can order them from the Association of the Children of the Holocaust in Poland, and I can give you an email address if you’re interested in obtaining a copy. I’m just going to read a short recollection by a woman named Diana Rus who’s remembering her life at the age of twelve. Diana was only slightly older than Abramek and they both lived in the same ghetto. We moved to the Ghetto as soon as the Germans announced that Jews were not allowed to live on the Aryan side. My father and uncles found a fairly decent house in the planned ghetto area, we all moved there. Both of my mother’s brothers and her sister with her children. Every part of this large family had its own room with a kitchen stove. The water was in the hall and the bathroom was in the yard. I still went to school in my first two years in the Ghetto. Then I had to work, first in an embroidery shop and then a tailor shop, but not for long because my father arranged for me to work in an accountant’s office. We all had to work, otherwise we didn’t get bread vouchers. Even our grandmother worked; she sorted the clothes of Jews deported to concentration camps. Things still weren’t so bad for some time, probably around two year. The vouchers brought us small amounts of black bread and artificial marmalade, and we got soup from a kitchen run by the municipality. There was still food on the black market, which of course cost a lot of money. There was also come kind of “social life”. After work people met, played cards, talked, and even sang. It seemed that somehow they would manage to survive this war, especially since the Łódź Ghetto was a productive- productive operating for the Germans. The so-called “departments” provided Germans with a wide variety of articles. I embroidered insignia for officers’ uniforms, but I already saw people begging on the streets who were hungry and dying, because there was no work or bread for them. The notion that we would somehow manage to survive ended abruptly with the first round-ups and deportations. My father was protected for the time being; he worked as the head of a sewing company, but he hid my mother, my grandmother, and me in an empty house. I was deported with my entire family to Auschwitz in August 1944. In 1943 more than 70,000 people worked for the occupiers in the Łódź Ghetto. 200,000 people passed through during the time that it was in operation, 45,000 people died of starvation, cold, and emaciation. It was during this time and under these circumstances that young Abramek was writing poetry. This bridge was the border between imprisonment and freedom. Climbing the bridge was a chance to glimpse the world outside the ghetto. Many people committed suicide there. The bridge a appears in many historical photographs; it’s one of the most recognizable landmarks of Łódź and it became a symbol of the tragic events that happened there. The bridge connected one side of the street to a church on the other side- this is a different view, which the Nazis turned into a warehouse for property that had been stolen from the Jews. The clothes of the people murdered at Chelmno on the Ner were brought there. When transports to the death camps had ended the church was used as a plant where feathers and down were sorted, and the air surrounding the church was often seen swirling with white down. In 1942 deportations of Łódź Jews to extermination camps began in January and In May 50,000 people were sent to Chelmno on the Ner, In September 20,000 Jewish children were sent to Chelmno on the Ner. And in the summer of 1944 over 7,000 people were deported to Chelmno and 76,000 to Auschwitz. This last transport included Abramek and his family. Upon their arrival at Auschwitz Abramek’s mother was sent immediately to the gas chamber, Abramek and his father were sent to forced labor. Abramek’s father wanted to spare his son from the ordeal and left him at the barrack and when he returned at the end of the day Abramek was gone. The Germans had rounded up all those inside and sent them to death. When the Soviet Army entered Łódź on January When he returned at the end of the day Abram equus gone 1945 only 877 Jews were still alive, 12 of whom were children. After the war -and this side is the slide is blank because I don’t have a picture of this family I’m going to talk about, but after the war and the deaths of his wife and child Mendel Koplowitz, Abramek’s father, After the war and this side is the slide is blank Haya Grynfeld, who also had been in the Łódź Ghetto. Mrs. Grynfeld’s son, Lolek also survived the holocaust, and they returned to Poland and Lolek became a stepbrother to Abramek. They were brothers who never met, though they shared many of the same ghastly childhood experiences. Lolek’s family was rounded up by the Germans in October of 1944, after deportations to Auschwitz had stopped. Lolek ended up in Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp his mother was sent to Ravensbruck, Lolek’s father had been killed early on in the war during the German bombardments. Having escaped death at Sachsenhausen, Lolek was taken on a German death march. In an interview by journalist Sarah Honig- she’s a former journalist for The Jerusalem Post and she’s written about Abramek Abramek’s story as well, Lolek described this experience to her. He said, “On the fifth night of the ordeal, they locked us up in an old stable. Several of us conspired to escape. I tripped one of the guards and the others finished him off with their wooden clogs.” Somehow Lolek and his mother both survived and managed to return to Poland together. Lolek’s mothers and Abramek’s father married, and after things had settled down Mendel Koplowitz never mentioned Abramek. He went back to the family’s ghetto home in Łódź to gather what was left, and in the attic he found a painting. Lowell X mother and amber mix father which Abramek had painted, and which Abramek’s father hung in their family household. Lolek says, “My stepfather framed it and hung it in his bedroom for years, But he never mentioned finding anything else in that attic. He didn’t like to talk about Abramek He was racked with guilt for having left the boy in the barrack. He wanted to spare the child, and didn’t know that other fathers smuggled children under this coats just so they could be with them.” I’m sorry. “He didn’t know that other fathers had smuggled their children under their coats just so they could be with them. There’s no guarantee that Abramek would have survived, but his father ate himself up. When Lolek’s father or stepfather became ill later in life, Lolek took care of him until he died at age 83 in 1983. Several years later Lolek’s mother died, and when he was finally ready to go through his parents belongings he realized that when his stepfather returned to the ghetto he found more than just the painting. He also found this. It’s an old Polish school composition book handwritten, carefully illustrated and with the name A. Koplowicz. The title, “Utwory-” I don’t know it, you can say it better than I can, means “my own work”. And at the bottom of the page, you can see the ink drawing of that famous bridge and the church, which Abramek must have seen from for the years that he lived there. He says, “Imagine my astonishment when I turned the pages, which were literally falling apart. In places the handwriting had begun to fade.” And this is a page of the notebook you can see the handwriting is literally disappearing. From for the years that he lived there has the title for a poem called “A Dream”, “Marzenie”. And this is where he wrote that poem. In the poem he goes on to describe a journey around the globe to see the wonders of the world. And for Abramek and how many others we’ll never know poetry in itself became a vehicle that allow- that allowed his soaring imagination to become weightless and free. At the beginning of my talk I said that those poems For Abram Eck and how many others will never know? Poetry in itself became a vehicle that allow that allowed his soaring imagination they’ve been carried to us as if on the wind by luck and by chance; these poems these twirling seeds have drifted through fences, over walls, across oceans. And the more I worked on this project the more this idea of flight, of breaking through a freedom, flight as escape, flight as travel, it just was everywhere in these five poems that are in this collection. And as I was working on the illustrations and reading through the poems, they had- there were references to birds and and flight in a dream. He says, “In my motorized bird I’ll soar so high Above the world, up in the sky.” We’re going to read the full poem in Polish and in English. And he said he goes on, he says, “With my brother wind and sister cloud, I’ll marvel at the Euphrates and the Nile.” And these are all the illustrations that are in the book’ the illustrations are all in black and white. They were pen and ink drawings. In another poem called “The Gale”, “Now the roof creaks, The gale puffs out its cheeks And scatters debris all over the place. A swallow is heard to say As she hides in the hay That the world is too frightening to face.” This is a 13 year old boy. The poem goes on and we’ll read one of those, they also recorded me reading a couple of these and they’re online; there’s a podcast that you can listen to two of these poems and “The Gale” was one of them I think. This is also from “The Gale”. Blackberries mutter to vines, Birches whisper to pines; They all sound perplexed. All forms of life. The swallow and his wife, Are wondering what will come next. And this particular page, I’ll just talk about how we printed it. All of the type is letterpress printed; it’s all hands that type. Each individual letter was placed carefully and printed on to the page. This- these two pages were a particular problem because of the And this particular page, I’ll just talk about how we printed it so we had a wonderful mentor working with us who helped us figure out a way to do this. But we printed the image first the way you see it here. And each line- this is a printed on to the page this these two pages were a particular problem because of the sandwiching the letters and the spacing in that exact right curve so that it’ll fit right into the vines. And So we had a wonderful mentor working with us who helped us figure out a way to do this dad was nice enough to cut these little blocks for each one of these lines. And here is that that one word: “blackberries”, and it’s locked into a chase, it’s ready to go in and so that one word would be printed and we printed a hundred pages of that onto the vine, and then we went to the next. So each each line we printed in place. It took us about three days to do that. And then the final poem is “The Clock,” and he says, it buzzes “Inside it buzzes like a hive of bees; The ancient tune plays ‘tick-tock'” This poem didn’t have a bird, it had the bees but I sort of went with it and And then the final poem is the clock and he says it buzzes inside cuckoo clock and so there are two birds on this illustration, right? There’s one on top and there’s one inside the door. And this is from “The Beggar”. This illustration was based on a photograph by Henrik Ross, who bravely Cuckoo clock and so there are two birds on this illustration, right? to the outside world. His photographs are available to view at the Yad Vashem website, and they generously gave me permission to use the photographs as reference material for this book. “Impoverished and broken With his needs unspoken, Like a man adrift at sea.” to the outside world at the bottom. The poem “Sacrifice”, I don’t think I could get through; I’m not going to read that one today. It’s a poem about parents waiting for their missing son to return from war. And so I kept the motif of birds even though there’s no mention of them in this poem. It starts, “The bullets fly- he’s going west. He is trampled in the mud; he cannot rise. ‘Goodbye mother and dad,’ he whispers as he dies. Back home in the hamlet, after many years hope still makes them run To every man coming up the road; he could be their beloved son! But it’s always a stranger. ‘Time heals all wounds’, but it hasn’t done. The father dies from longing for his son, but the mother will not rest. In her dreams she kisses him tenderly and clasps him to her breast.” I think these poems are strangely visionary in a way. Somehow he- he knew. So this is some- where we printed the book. I said that images of birds and flight kept popping up. This is a photograph of the printing press on the left, on the top right is “The Gale” typeset, and at the bottom is the illustration for that page. And I hope that our mentor won’t mind that I look that I’m sharing a couple of photographs from his studio, but not only was he named Sky, but his enterprise is Skyline Type Foundry. And his full name is Sky Shipley. And this is the workshop where we spent days at a time for about six months over the last year. He’s got all kinds of artifacts from his many endeavors. I took a few pictures and in fact before Sky became a printer full-time he he was a pilot; and so everywhere we looked there were planes, there were all of these kinds of artifacts, and and things that sort of had to do with this whole theme. And above the printing press there is this wall of sign of signs, print letterpress printed signs, postcards, bookmarks. He’s got this huge collection. These were all letterpress printed by people he knows, and these were kind of these signs to us we as we were printing; it was almost this motivation for us to keep going, keep calm and press on, don’t quit. The bottom right says “travel to your dreams”, and this one on the left just said “empathy”. “It is what it is”. The bottom one is a printing press, and it’s too small for me to see without my glasses. It says, “Tyrants foe, the people’s friend. The printing press”. And this is a picture of a full page of type in the chase, and in order to print a page you lock up this type into the chase. And as I was setting the type, I had all this time to kind of think about the words that we were printing we you know, we set them forward letter by letter; and so it allowed for this very slow reading of all of these poems, and And as I was setting the type, I had all this time to kind of think about the words that we were printing setting this type- this is for the introduction, Sara Lawson, she wrote in her introduction that she said, “If not for a few fortuitous circumstances, we might know nothing about Abramek or his precocious abilities, just as we are ignorant of so many other mozart assessing a in the striking phrase of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.” And the -that was Saint-Exupéry, you know from Little Prince, of course and She wrote in her introduction that 1920s and 30s. And that phrase Mozart assassin a appears in the final paragraphs of a book of his called “Wind Sand and Stars”, and in this particular passage he’s writing about his own experience on a train leaving Franc. And he’s walking the length of the train in the middle of the night and he observes that the first-class cars are empty but the third-class cars are packed with Polish immigrants 1920s and 30s and that phrase Mozart assassin a clattering, and he notices a child asleep he’s writing about his own experience on a train leaving France and he thinks- and this is a quote he says, “This is a child of Mozart. This is a life full of promise. Little princes in legends are not different from this. Protected, sheltered, cultivated, what could not this child become?” But he knows this little Mozart will be, he said, “marked like the others by the stamping machine. Mozart is doomed.” Of course they were on their way back to Poland. He thinks and this is a quote. He says this is a child of Mozart. This is a life full of promise this waste of childhood promise that that he recognized and that we recognize in Abramek. Between 1 and 2 million Jewish children were killed in the Holocaust. This destroyed potential is unknowable but undoubted. And Sarah Lawson says, “Imagine them all lined up and holding hands. The line would stretch for more than 450 miles.” And there’s there’s Ken, I have to acknowledge my husband Ken who is my partner and all of the printing process. He’s right behind you. And that chase that you saw when it’s packed with lead type, there’s no way I could lift that Sarah Lawson says imagine them all lined up and holding hands the line would stretch for more than 450 miles he’d walk it over and put it into the printing press and and he did all the printing so. So this is another picture of some of our implements that are tools of the trade. and anybody want to guess what this might be? A little bunch of lead type tied up with a string. No guesses? So the typeface that we chose did not have an em dash. So we had to create an em dash, and Sky This spacing material together. This is a picture of our little type drawer “Ken and Kelly”. so the that I took on our last day of printing driving away from the studio, and these contrails in the air of planes criss crossing the sky. So Abramek didn’t survive to see his dream fulfilled. So, how is it that we’re here today reading the works of a young man who from the age of 8 to 14 had only two years of elementary school, and for the second half of his life he knew only the Łódź Ghetto? How is it that they reached us here today? And I have to say the the answer is a testament to the power of poetry and love. “More and more astonished will I grow at the beauty of the earth below,” he says, “In all my traveling I’ll be twinned with my siblings, cloud and wind”. Abramek had a stepbrother he never knew who endured the same horrors in his early life. In his shared experience they were true brothers and Lolek grew up knowing Abramek’s father as his own, and little did Lolek know that his missing stepbrother, Abramek, had dreamed of a long-lost sibling with whom he might someday be reunited. In “A Dream”, it’s clear that Abramek felt the presence of a kind friend, invisible as the wind, who he imagined would guide him and share in his journey. Like the brother wind that Abramek imagined, Lolek carried his brother’s dream around the world. After publication of Abramek’s work in his native Polish, Lolek saw to it that it was translated into many many languages, and it was thus carried across across oceans and deserts. Lolek presented Abramek’s notebook to Yad Vashem, the museum and archive in Israel that commemorates the victims of the Holocaust. His wife Rachelka is a Holocaust survivor as well. They met after the liberation and This is a picture of Lolek today. They have two children, five grandchildren, and eleven great-grandchildren. I want to say one last thing before we read the poems or the poem. For us Abramek will always be 14; caught in the middle. The middle grades, the middle ages where you know, 14 is where you’re too young to do some things. This that certain things are going on around you. Fourteen is the age of Romeo and Juliet. That in between age; young enough to love without bounds, to be free of the shackles of prejudice, to enjoy the freedoms or responsibilities of adulthood yet old enough to recognize that the world has great cruelty and immense beauty. Abramek’s poetry will stay fourteen forever; astonishing in its maturity and, yet we still hear boyish joy and optimism. And now we’re going to read “A Dream”, and we have a special treat; we’re going to have a reading in in the original language of Polish. These poems have been translated before from from Hebrew into English, but these are the first translations directly from Polish into English. Do you want to come up? Marzenie And now we’re going to read a dream and we have a special treat We’re going to have a reading in in the original language of Polish these poems have been translated before from from Hebrew into English, but these are the first translations directly from Polish into English Do you want come up? Marzenie [unknown] [unknown] [unknown] [unknown] [unknown] [unknown] [unknown] [unknown] [unknown] [unknown] [unknown] [unknown] Thank you. So I’ll read from the book itself. “A Dream”. And I’m gonna leave the picture of Brother Wind. When I am twenty years of age, I will burst forth from this cage And begin to see our splendid Earth For the first time since my birth! In my motorized bird I’ll soar so high Above the world, up in the sky, Over rivers and the seas, With such stupefying ease, With my brother wind and sister cloud, I’ll Marvel at the Euphrates and the Nile; the goddess Isis ruled the land that links The Pyramids and the massive Sphynx. I will glide above Niagara Falls, And sunbathe where the Sahara calls; If I want to escape the scorching heat, I will fly up north to an Arctic retreat. I will top the cloudy peaks of Tibetan frame And survey the fabled land whence the Magi came. From the Island of Kangaroos I’ll take my time and cruise To the ruins of Pompeii And the edge of Naples Bay, I’ll continue to the Holy Land, then seek The home of Homer, the celebrated Greek. More and more astonished will I grow At the beauty of the Earth below. In all my traveling I’ll be twinned With my siblings, cloud and the wind. Thank you. Thank you for being here today. You can’t- he wants me to tell the story of the the book jacket. So we when we learned about that story of Abramek’s father my mother sewed these little book jackets for the book in it. It’s a a book wrap that the book comes in. And she hand sewed these. They’re made from the same kind of wool that coats were made of in the 1930s and they have a little 1930s button; the same as they used to have on their coats. And I think Kathy recognized this. Didn’t you? I recognized the fabric and the buttons. I am from Polish heritage and my grandfather had a coat and I remember the feel and as well as the visual when I looked at that jacket. Okay, so thank you Kelly for those heartfelt words and images, and thank you for preserving the life of one who left us much too young. I would also like to thank Dr.- Dr. Sitka who is on the faculty of the Head of German Ro- and he”s the Faculty Head of German Romanian Slavic Languages, and is a professor here in the School of International Letters and Cultures. It was so wonderful to hear my native tongue again. Thank you to ASU Libraries for all of your support, the school of English, and everyone else that helped to make this day. I will never forget this International Holocaust Memorial Day and I only wish that all of the ASU students were in this room with us today. We we have a small memorial for you to take with you; they are bookmarks, and they have one of the images from the book and it also talks a bit about the book and how it came to be at ASU on the back. And also when we were putting our display together we found a book that has facsimiles of the poems, as well as a Hebrew translation of them. So they are at the back of the room, and I invite you to come and view what we have on display. To have something to eat on to my left, but please don’t mix the food with the books. Thank you so much for coming.