Painting Czeslawa Kwoka by Theresa Edwards (verse) & Lori Schreiner (art)
In Brasse’s black and white photos,
you are a young girl with a round face
dropped into a flat, grey world,
26947 sewn on a striped wardrobe,
naked beneath these numbers.
What does color bring to you?
In color you move through our minds.
In color you are a movie star: Mia Farrow—
slightly protruding upper lip, swollen bottom
forms a dense shadow to your chin.
In color you are a young woman
bleeding from within: pale skin
filters red to pink. This is the
girl you are at Auschwitz, Czeslawa.
You are not a criminal.