Tobias Seamon


Touring the Holocaust Museum, you are herded through a swastika. In the angles of the crooked cross, there are exhibits: a gypsy cart in a black walled grotto sits alone under a spotlight, violin resting against the seat.

Entering you are given a passport: the life and identity, sometimes a photograph,
of a dead person. Later you walk a plank through a cattle car. The wood smells only of must.

Ingrained in the museum's theme, there is the implicit question of accomplice and victim. It is not uncommon in the bathrooms to see people with embarrassed smiles as they splash water across their faces.

There is a wall around the exhibit of the S.S. medical experiments. Throngs press over the wall to view, throngs walk past refusing to look. There is no wall high or low enough for either crowd.

The last room allows breathing space, where the swastika opens into a Star of David, and candles line the walls. At crenelated windows, one man stands apart from his family, looking out. He calls them over and says, "You should see this."

The whole room moves tentatively towards the windows, bodies and heads turned sharply to view whatever the last exhibit could be:

The winter sunset is scarlet, sunken yet vivid among other museums of the complex.

Location: Albany, New York
Publications: 42opus, M.A.G., CutBank, The Blue Moon Review, The Mississippi Review, The Pedestal Magazine, Snow Monkey, etc.
Editor of: Whalelane
Other: Contributing writer for the online broadsheet The Morning News

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