ARBEIT MACHT FREI*—by Gertrud J. Lind


Arbeit Macht Frie
Arbeit Macht Frei at Auschwitz

Gertrud J. Lind

Reviled German words: “Work Sets You Free” or “Work”, “Power”, “Free”.
Bringing visions of multitudes who slaved behind that gate,
Each one surely praying for the last, to be “frei”.
In the middle of “Macht”, the mighty Nazi power,
They were caught, “frei” only their “Arbeit”, their labor.

Madness reigned behind these words,
And madness and very
Clever calculation drove that “Macht”.
Hate unleashed, unchecked, unchallenged.
Think what it did.

Freedom demands that we
Each one of us
Is responsible.

*Macht, third-person singular present of the verb“machen” to make
Macht (noun, plural Mächte), might, power
Derived terms: Machthaber, rulers,authorities; Wehrmacht, Armed Forces, Seemacht, naval power;
Vollmacht, power of attorney; Zaubermacht, magical powers

Macht ist die Fähigkeit, organisatorische Ergebnisse zu bewirken oder zu beeinflussen.
Power is the capacity to effect (or affect) organisational outcomes.“ – Henry Mintzberg