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The landscape here is grey. There is no color: flowers don’t grow here; not even grass grows here. It is a barren, grey place in which the only signs of life are the dogs who bark and the Nazis who shout.

This is Auschwitz.

I do not have a name. I’m not sure how old I am, only that I am still young. My family is gone, but I remember them. I’ve seen and done things here, things that haunt me. The only way out is to become the ash that floats in the air; the only way out is through the chimneys.

But I have made a friend. He is like a Shabbat candle; he gives me hope. He has a secret, a secret plan to make me smile in the midst of death, a way to see color again and to hear the whistling elephant.

He is my way out.