Drawing "Defenceless Under the Night" by Hunter Madsen

"Defenceless Under the Night"

        
 
Like gay men far and wide, most of those gathered into the concentration camps were vivid individuals of sensitivity and accomplishment; yet their status was lowest of the low among the various classes of prisoner.  Gays were subject to relentless bullying, physical torment, and violation; many were castrated or destroyed through medical experiments. Thousands died gruesomely, to the sound of jeers.
  
"Defenceless" honours these despised and beautiful souls - kindred to me, like brothers, and now mostly forgotten - for their dignity at the heel of unimaginable terror and suffering. 
 
  
Defenceless under the night
Our world in stupor lies;
Yet, dotted everywhere,
Ironic points of light
Flash out wherever the Just
Exchange their messages:
May I, composed like them
Of Eros and of dust,
Beleaguered by the same
Negation and despair,
Show an affirming flame.

      
- W. H. Auden, from "September 1, 1939"

    
TITLE - "Defenceless Under the Night"
WHERE - Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp Museum, Oranienburg, Germany (2015)