Monday, November 1, 2010

In Memoriam

"Look at these towers, passerby, and try to imagine what they really mean - what they symbolize - what they evoke. They evoke an era of incommensurate darkness, an era in history when civilization lost its humanity and humanity its soul . . ."

"We must look at these towers of memory and say to ourselves, No one should ever deprive a human being of his or her right to dignity. No one should ever deprive anyone of his or her right to be a sovereign human being. No one should ever speak again about racial superiority... We cannot give evil another chance."

- Elie Wiesel

I don't go downtown much. When I do, I usually find something I've never seen before in the city. Walking around the city at night with Andrea on my birthday, killing time before seeing an improv show, we came upon this memorial. I didn't know Boston had this monument, and didn't realize what I was looking at, save for my wife enlightening me.

Not only is it quite unique and somber in it's design, depending how you choose to view the steam-vents under each tower, the memorial is something you can easily pass by and not give a second thought. I almost did just that. I am glad I didn't. I am glad I took a few minutes to capture just a fraction of the six million bar code numbers that seem to go on endlessly.

"The design utilizes uniquely powerful symbols of the Holocaust. The Memorial features six luminous glass towers, each 54 feet high. The towers are lit internally to gleam at night. They are set on a black granite path, each one over a dark chamber which carries the name of one of the principal Nazi death camps. Smoke rises from charred embers at the bottom of these chambers. Six million numbers are etched in glass in an orderly pattern, suggesting the infamous tattooed numbers and ghostly ledgers of the Nazi bureaucracy. Evocative and rich in metaphor, the six towers recall the six main death camps, the six million Jews who died, or a menorah of memorial candles." -

I am glad we lingered. Such things should not be forgotten.

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