A photograph 

There are photographs of roundups on Jonas Daniël Meijerplein
where German soldiers
can be seen bullying Jews. 

A fearful man with shiny shoes, long coat and bow tie
is herded across the square
as if it were a livestock market. 

Three German soldiers are watching with a mocking smile, and there’s a fourth one, who, perhaps ashamed, averts his eyes. 

Imagine that you saw that photograph of a man with a bow tie
and that you suddenly realised
you were looking at your dad. 

Sometimes I also wonder
how the other son must feel,
the one who recognised his father in the smiling soldier looking on. 

Willem Wilmink

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