A Letter to Liable

February 3, 2010
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A Letter to Liable

Dear Liable,
In strange way, I am glad that you died. You will no longer have to suffer. You will no longer have to be cold and hungry. Most of all, you didn’t have to go to any concentration camp. After your death, I met Yulek Schwartz, whom I became very fond of. I would like to share how he helped me. I also would like to tell you about our journey to the railroad station and inside the cattle cars. I believe that you will be glad that you didn’t have to go through some of these experiences.
Yulek was sent to our home by Skif. He asked if he could do anything to help. Even though I knew most of the Skif, (The Children’s Socialist Movement) I had never met him before. He told me that he was new to the group. Someone had told him about me, Motele, and Moishele. He said that he knew about you and Mama. After that, he came by every evening, sometimes with his sister. Yulek said that he knew how I felt and that I wasn’t the only one. He had to be a father and mother to his sister, Fayele, just like I had to be with you, Motele, and Moishele. It was nice having someone who understood and was in the same situation. He would beg me to continue to write letters and write in my journal. He said that they were very important. One day he got angry at me because I was giving up. He told me not to ever give up or speak of dieing and that there is a tomorrow for us. This is why I liked him and why I think that you would have to. I am sad that you didn’t get a chance to meet him.
Our only hope of staying together was going to the railroad station. We had decided to leave as a family that included Karola, Berl, Mrs. Mikita, Labish, Rifkele, and Mrs.Boruchowich. Motele told to take all of my letters, poems, and journal. When we arrived at the station, there were people everywhere. Motele told everyone to stay together. The guards were becoming very impatient. Our group was called. The cart was almost full and we were at the end of the line. We could barely move our arms because of the large amount of people. When the doors were closed, it became dark and humid. People were cursing God and others were telling everyone to keep hope, not to give up, and that we will survive. Motele told me to stay with Karola and Rifkele if they separate men and women. Days began to pass. Soon the cattle car began to smell of human discharge mixed with heat. It was difficult to breath. The heat and smell caused some people to faint. The cattle car stopped and a German voice said, “Welcome to Auschwitz, Jews.”

I am sad that you didn’t get a chance to meet Yulek or experience our library. I am glad that you didn’t have to experience being in that cattle car. Even though you aren’t with me in person, I can continue reading The Adventures of Motel to you. I can also sing the song about winter to you. You didn’t deserve to be sick, I’m glad you no longer had to be sick.

Your loving sister,

Riva Minska

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