The tenth of May I’ll never forget,
It lies dormant in me, in my blood
And there it will remain until I die;
Let it always be remembered like it should!
When on that morning my neighbours cried;
‘Wake up! The Germans have arrived!
They marched in while we slept’
And:Schiphol oh Schiphol has not survived’
I have, and only God will know,
For my outrage shall never calm down,
Prayed that these Nazi thugs
In Dutch waters shall surely drown!
For two long days our men fought on,
For Rotterdam until our skies be cleared;
There was no triumph for our foe,
And then it went the way we feared!
The crows made of steel suddenly came,
Screaming in our skies in a peaceful sun
Dropping their fearsome and ugly bombs.
Plane after plane and gun after gun!
Later I wandered by the catacombs,
That appeared as if by gruesome magic,
And for fourteen long nights
Hourly I heard the bell chiming, so tragic.
Then those, who thought they were the best,
“Decorated by godly words of glory”
Gifted the clock of blood and shame*
To him who set Rotterdam in fire and fury,
With this my head began to quake,
As the steady hand became much stiller
I lived my days in deepest shadow
As I may have become a killer.
That hand, at last, achieved more peace
A peace that never earned a name but death
A German soldier came singing beneath the window,
When there was gasping for one last breath.
I wrestled endlessly with myself,
Wrangling with a voice in my blood,
It told me that all in the world
Will always happen, just like it should!
God and one dead are my witness,
They were in my battle from the start,
And they know what I did for the truth,
But doubt is still deep in my heart.
But that day of the 10th I will never forget,
It will stay in my blood let that be clear,
Remember this and mark my words!
It will only die when I’m no longer here.