Inside the Walls of Hell: Inspired by Terezin

by Virginia Baynum

Even the children wrote in Terezin. They drew, and wrote poems. They cried for the days of life outside those colorless walls and to be reunited with their families. A child named Teddy wrote “Here in Terezin, life is hell. And when I’ll go home again, I can’t yet tell.” Maybe poor Teddy never really made it home, but his writings did.

Terezin was full of people like the ones I know. They were artists, designers, and, of course, writers. They wrote because they had to and because they needed to. They wrote to help understand it all and they wrote to help get through it all. Should children write about things they cannot possibly understand, such as death? Yes, they should, because the adults that wrote about those topics in Terezin understood it just as much as the children did.

When I was in Terezin I felt my heart sink, not only at the brutal conditions of these unfortunate people but because many of them were writers like me. That is because even the children wrote in Terezin.

 

Read an interview with Virginia here.

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