At the poem’s end, Milsoz included information critical to the poem’s context: Warsaw 1945. This clue is like a time stamp. It gives the reader necessary insight into who the dead are that the speaker is addressing, it supplies necessary and specific historical context, and illuminates the reason behind the tone of the poem.
(Do a quick bit of research/investigation into “Warsaw 1945” and “Warsaw Ghetto” before you proceed.)
Then, consider the way time operates more broadly in the poem. Read the poem several times over. What is the role of the past? What happened? What do you understand about the poem’s and the speaker’s present?
The future? Reread and annotate closely, paying attention to the use of verb tenses. Notice the ways each self-contained verse is a link in a progression as time proceeds through the poem.
In what ways do form and content in the poem work together to address past, present, and future, and why? Develop an arguable topic claim in direct response to this prompt question.