Jewish Music & Poetry Project

Poets & Musicians

Yala Korwin, poet

 "I escaped to be a witness."

Yala Korwin, artist and poet, was born in Poland. In her own words, she survived a labor camp in the heart of Germany, and having no place to return to after the end of WWII, let the winds carry her to France, where she lived as a refugee for ten years. In 1956 she emigrated to the United States with her husband and young children. Her book, To Tell the Story: Poems of the Holocaust was published in 1987 by the now defunct Holocaust Library. A poem she hopes to be remembered by is "The Little Boy with His Hands Up." It has been included in the documentary film produced in Finland; discussed in an essay by M. Hirsch in Acts of Memory, published by Dartmouth College; used by Prof. R. Raskin of Denmark in his forthcoming scholarly study of the famous photograph; and included in the curriculum unit created by the Westchester Holocaust Education Center.