(I wrote this story based on a true story of a woman who was kept captive in a basement by her own father for 24 years of her life. I wrote the story as I was on her own shoes...)
My name is Elizabeth. I have lived in Austria at my mother and father's house for 43 years. During the first 19 years of my life, I lived with both of them, I mean, face to face. After that time, I was still there but without seeing or hearing my mother and she the same thing, could not see or hear me. From my 19th to my 43rd birthday the only contact I had with the world ouside was through my father. In the basement of our house, he built a "cage" for me. A very strategically made cubicle where only he could have access by using secret codes. For 24 years of my life I was kept as my father's sexual slave. He did inflict me all kinds of abuses: thinkable and unthinkable. He stole my freedom, my life, my dreams, my hopes, above all, my dignity .... He violated my body, gave me the deepest emotional scars. My life became what he wanted to be for his supreme and exclusive pleasure.
Most of the time, my days inside that torture chamber were lived in absolute darkness. The most terrorizing thing to me was the sound of his steps toward the door. Every day he came was another day to live exposed to his brutality and sadistic mind. Every time, before raping me, he used to handcuff me. At the beginning, my body was hypersensitive to his touch. The sexual act was the most painful, distressing, horrifying thing to endure. But after some time, I was so emotionally hurt that my body grew benumbed. It became a dead body being assaulted. My feelings and mind were not there anymore. They were apart of that molested body. It was a self-mechanism to survive psychologically. However, the functions of my physical body were still working. I got pregnant seven times. I had seven children with my own father. The kids were born destined to be slaves... like me. Their fate were already sealed... like mine.
The outsiders really cannot calculate how really free they ARE, even the ones who think they have no freedom at all, like the ones locked up in penitentiaries, they DO. At least, they can see the sunlight, feel the wind blowing on their skin, smell fresh air, walk outdoors inspite of having fences around them. Even so.. they are free!!! I know what freedom is and what is not as all others who live the same condiction as myself. Silenced voices of the forgotten. They scream but nobody know they exist, but their inhuman/barbarian/primitive "owners". If I got sick, I could not see a doctor. If I got a tootache I could not see a dentist. I would have to endure the pain whatever it was and try to figure out a way to get rid of that problem myself. I did have to face seven pregnancies with no any kind of assistance. Seven times in labor. The pain, the worries, the nightmares I felt in full, under the most absolute solitude. Then had to raise each one of the kids in that hole. No enough space, almost no ventilation (air we got only through little holes on the wall), no light most of the time, everywhere was pure mold ... Besides no celebrations, nothing to hope for, no possible promises of a different life to them. The only perspective in my mind: "Here you all were born, here you all will live and die." It was deeply painful to me to see the kids and accept they would never see the sunlight, have friends, go to school, climb a tree, play soccer, see the ocean, the sky, animals, the moon, in a nutshell, the beautiful dynamic of the universe outside those gelid walls. They would never understand the concept of freedom, how it looked like, felt like. Their world was just that tiny, dark, and suffocating place, nothing else! They could not imagine anything else. It was like to try to make a blind person to understand about colors. It was an impossible task. It did not make any difference if it was explained with a wealth of details or no details at all. Some things in life one must see and feel to really understand what they mean. It is a lot about experience. Some things cannot be translated through words.
My life and my kids' lives in that claustrophobic banker for years and years and years were nothing more than what our own concrete fears and uncertainties had created in that atmosphere and, above all, what my father had decided. His power over us was absolute... iron-fisted kind of influence. Our life experiences were based on his own heinous needs ... ours were ignored by him, in his sick mind unexisted. Our vulnerability was so, so opressive!!!..
For 24 years inside that hole, the same thoughts came out of my mind every minute: " What if my father dies? Nobody will find us here and we will have a very agonizing death!" One day, my older daughter got very sick. There was nothing I could do to help her. She needed medical attention desperately. She was about to dying when my father decided to take her to the hospital. He was very, very distressed, afraid of being caught, and all his horrific crimes come up to the surface before the public knowledge.
The day came when a miracle shinned to all of us. At the hospital, the staff which was taking care of my daughter rouse questions about her strange illness. She had gotten a very serious skin condition by being exposed to too many fungi and no sunlight at all. It was a red flag for them. The police was called and it was due to my daughter's condition our destinies changed forever. We got our FREEDOM!!! The police found us and imediatelly removed us from that underworld. After 24 years of forced incarceration and abuse, it was unthinkable conceive there would be a way out of that hell. I was in shock as well as all my children. We did not know what to do. We left the house all covered, under blankets because our eyes were not used to the sunlight. All of us were taken to get medical and psychological treatment. My older daughter was put into coma to recover little by little from that "mental and emotional asphyxia" my father imposed to us for so many years.
My father's fate was sealed, finally out of his own control. The police took him into custody. There was a trial. Finally, I had my voice heard! It took 24 years to experience that. I did testify against him, the monster who haunted my days and nights for almost two decades and a half. From my chair I could see him under another perspective. That so powerful and so controlling man had fear in his eyes. He was experiencing humiliation and vulnerability. He was sentenced to life in prison. As a very old man he already was, he would not live long behind bars in his existence, but anyway he would savor a little bit of his own poison: to live inside 4 walls and witness the power of his freedom in the hands of others. Our story shocked not only Austria, but the whole world.
When my story was told, others in other countries emerged. Other women, other "Elizabeths" lived what I did live and got their own freedom. Due to my story, many other happy stories came up and so many destinies were forever changed. The only rewarding thing about my experience was to be able to give voice to others... Now free, I felt like I had a sencond chance to be born. I did! Amen



The pain comes from her
It has deep roots in a place to a woman
Was neglected the right of being
The walls, the cages ...
Her only possible destinations
Her prisons!
They are disguised by a feeling
Of constant agony

Behind those gelid bars
Borns, lives, and dies
Pain, emptiness, loneliness
Mixed emotions...
An endless dispair
Of a bird with wings not allowed
To touch the skies
Feel the breeze of the wind
The sunshine
Its warmth...

This life has no color
No movement
No taste
No passion
It is raw
It is rough
It hurts under the skin
The pain penetrates the soul
It bleeds in tears
There is no mercy

Behind the walls
A woman's intimate world
Borns, lives, and dies
In desires and hopes
Has a loud voice
Has a brilliant mind
Has romantic ideals
Looks for a light
In the end of a tunnel
In the eyes of strangers...

This woman has a soul of a poet
She still believe in love
And its power
In the fairy-tales
Love conquers everything
It is always a possibility
It always triumph in the end
She lives immersed in her idealistic dreams

She tries to breath
Deep and peacefully
But her heart is restless
It feels the pain of her miserable

The outside world
Exists apart from hers
There is life
But it does not live
There is a heartbeat
But it does not pulse
There is a voice
But it does not have a sound
There are desires
But no space for their expression
There are hopes
But no open doors for them...

The woman now suffocates
Between the bars...
There is a cry and a scream
The world outside
Seems to ignore her pain
People around are deaf
To her voice
People around are blind
To her face
People are frozen in time
To understand her reasons
To cry and scream
People are cold
No soul survived
After so much pain
So much sorrow
So many chains
So many guns
And heavy words
And hardened hearts

The woman exists as a sphinx
Undecipherable to others...
As a statue forgotten
In an empty garden
Devastated by a storm...

In the outside world
She is not but a ghost of a being
Paralyzed in her agony
Her world is her cloister
It is called
For the suffering there is no translation

To heal her open wound
There is only a cure....

For her deepest pain
The only possible relief...
To be loved back

Maybe somewhere
There is happiness!
She does need to know

Behind the bars
She cannot live for so long...
Her strength to fight
Is vanishing
Little by little

She needs desperately
To reach a world
Ready to smile
And see
And hear
Toward her
Through her

She is struggling
For a chance
For a change
It is so urgent!
It is vital!

It is the difference between
Life and death




A woman's wisdom grows from courage, truth, kindness, patience, mistakes, experiences, generosity, constant rebirths, changes, honesty, concessions, silences, reconciliations, love for life, people, and nature, open eyes, flexible mind, compassionate heart, from listening more than speakiang, paying attention to unspoken words than the ones said in a loud voice, lack of prejudice, imperfections, pains, tears, willingness, respect toward others and her own nature, faith in herself, love for herself, pride of being, joy of living ...



The most heinous crime
Its brutality is unthinkable
Human beings
In concentration camps

Fences all around

But most of all behind invisible bars

Living and dying
Under the highest level of inhumanity...

Sensory deprivation
Mass murderes
Medical experiments
Beings target of sadistic minds
Heartless individuals

Death machine
Banalization of life and values
Perpetrators dreaming paranoid allucinatios

They breath the pleasure of terrifying others
They cheer their atrocities
Proud of their horrendous accomplishments
Celebrate their coldness

They are fathers
Torturing men
Raping women
Sentencing brothers to slavery
Mutilating sisters
Killing babies

Supplied with power and weapons
They have license to kill
They feel as gods
The ones who will determine
Who will live
Who will die

The industry of death gets promissing
Gas chambers
Biological weapons
Forced labor

Generations and generations of people vanish
In a matter of minutes
Their last trip is toward the buildings
Where black smoke comes out of chimneys
Endless lives pulverizing the gray skies
The black smoke never stops burning
Like a volcano in constant eruption
Human leftovers...

Wars bring to the surface
The deepest human's darkness
Humans become monsters
Willing to annihilate
Evoquing nightmares
Impossible to wake up from devastation beyond repair

Physical and emotional wounds
Griveous memories
The trauma of being brutalized
Bodies, souls, hearts, minds forever changed
Witness of tragedies
Visions which wil never vanish
Fears that will never heal
No more hopes
No more trust
No more wishful thoughts
No purpose
Life becomes nothing more than a painful journey toward nowhere
Experiencing genocide
Can be like to have a nuclear bomb detonated within
The aftermath is the most absolute devastation
Nothing is left behind
To keep breathing
To keep believing
To keep dreaming of

Its arquitect borns in minds
Filled with hate
Frozen hearts
Blind thirst for power
Impunity gives it encouragement

To stop genocide all of us must look inside our hearts
To see what kinds of things we are cultivating in the daily basis
The quality of our relationships with the ones around us
What kinds of values we have been nourishing?
What are we doing, giving, taking, and getting?
All of that devastation starts growing in this microworld we have within
What are we looking for for us and for the next generations?

Love or hate?
Sanity or insanity?
Knowledge or ignorance?
Simpathy or indiference?
Light or darkness?

How much the life of someone who lives beside us does worth for us?
How much we care?
How much love we are willing to spread?
What kind of individual we are cultivating within?



You came out of blue
Put your eyes on me
Took my heart
Messed up with my mind
Changed my life...
You got my love right away
You got my soul in a day
You drove my imagination far away...
Your mesmerized my emotions
You were feast to my senses....
My being shaked
When you were around
Captivating it
Wrapping it with your gift for seduction
Your power over me had no precedents...
You knew my vulnerabilities
You knew my possibilities

I became your constant companion
You my fascination...
All of a sudden

You rejected me
Like an useless thing
Left my life
Without thinking
Abandonmed my heart bleeding
What kind of love was that?
Our story started unbelievably
Ended unexpectedly
Love emerged fast
But due to your fears
I got lost in tears
It was not meant to last
Was everything a test?
I gave you my best!
You did touch me so...
Now you asked me to go
I can forgive you
But not forget you
You were the one who
Got my heart
You were the one who
Torn it apart



Expectation feeling
Hug sharing
Kiss stealing
Hands holding
Gazes locking
Senses capturing
Emotions boiling
Thoughts flying
Love making
Heart shaking
Joy taking
Life awakening
Memories leaving
Forever remembering



The tree rests on top of the hill
Solemn and mesmerizing
Dignified in its humbleness
All the living beings surrounding it
Reverence its splendor

Its lightning-like branches
Open wide proud and generous

The leaves inviting shadow
Shield the grass
Like a blanket

Its stem is strong and nurturing
As an artery pumping blood
Throughout its colateral vessels

Its roots are deeply anchored to the ground
Holding it so eagerly
As it was its last salvation

Its hard work
Means a promissing and lasting existence
The tree relies on its roots
To keep parading its beauty and blessings

The tree of wisdom
Understands all kinds of languages
The wind whispering in symphony
The birds singing in harmony
Man’s dreaming
Life meaning

It knows the power of a storm
It resists bravely to the toughness
Of life vicissitudes
Its inner strength is unshakable

Is a friend that talks in the silence
Of its voice
It stays strong and still
There is no loneliness
In its presence

Knows about time
And keeps the secrecy of its events

Is shelter in dispair
Solace in a nightmare
As a warrior
Does not know fear
Its compassion
Has no boundaries
Its gifts are countless…