Sheila Finnigan’s “dripping jewels” (c. November 27, 2010)
is a probing narrative of a Nazi German woman at the close
An epic tone poem ninety pages in length, “dripping jewels”
commemorates Jewish victims of the Holocaust as it paints a
While Finnigan has done extensive research in this area, she has also woven into her poem first-hand information gleaned from her half-sister’s second husband, Wilhelm “Ben” Keitel. Nephew of Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel, Adolf Hitler’s right hand man who was tried and hung at Nuremburg, Ben Keitel was a top ranking member of the Nazi “elite” Waffen SS Death Squad.
Secreted after the War via ODESSA from Germany into Italy, he was hidden in several monasteries on his journey south. When it was deemed safe for him to leave Italy, he was disguised as a nun and smuggled into South Africa, where he lived and worked as a salesman for Agfa Gafaert. For some years he lived an anonymous life before being “transferred” to the United States and citizenship through his brief and ultimately tragic marriage to Finnigan’s sister.
Facts both known and unknown about the Holocaust are revealed in Sheila Finnigan’s searing “dripping jewels”.