Browsing Tag



A Jewish Cult Poet and His Famous Anti-Semitic Friend

By On May 17, 2017

If you’re familiar with Ezra Pound, the king of modernist poetry, then you’re probably aware of his notorious anti-Semitism. What you might not know is that a Jewish Marxist poet with a… Read More

Reading the Koran in Yiddish

Reading the Koran in Yiddish

By On October 27, 2015

  Demand for a Yiddish translation of the Koran has never been particularly high, but that didn’t discourage Solomon Blumgarten, penname Yehoash. Blumgarten (1872-1927), a Lithuanian-born New Yorker, translated parts of the… Read More


The 19th-Century Lesbian Writer Who Met a Tragic End

By On December 17, 2014

The challenges and rewards facing the female entrepreneur, the depiction of same-sex love, and a critique of the materialist values of affluent Jewish society—these contemporary themes got an early, gripping treatment long… Read More

When Heinrich Heine Wrote a Love Song to Chulent

When Heinrich Heine Wrote a Love Song to Cholent

By On September 10, 2014

  We all love cholent, that magical slow-cooking stew that’s usually served for Shabbat lunch. It can be made with beans, barley, meat, or whatever you have lying around the kitchen. It’s cross-cultural… Read More

Stealing Cherries

Dating in Brooklyn While Russian

By On December 20, 2013

Today, Marina Rubin is a mainstay of the lower Manhattan poetry scene. But in 1989—when most of the stories in her new collection, Stealing Cherries, take place—she was a refusenik, a new immigrant from the Ukraine,… Read More


Uncle Feygele

By On March 1, 2012

“Who exactly are my people? Where do the borders of folk begin?” asks poet Yermiyahu Ahron Taub in his poem “Wandering Jew in Little Rome.” Community–the traditional Jewish community he was raised in, and the gay community he… Read More


T.S. Eliot Vs. the Jews

By On December 28, 2011

Last month, the writer Emanuel Litvinoff died at the age of 96. Litvinoff wrote poetry, a memoir, and several novels. But history might remember him most for one poem, “To T.S. Eliot,” a lambasting and inspired statement… Read More


Who Shall I Fear

By On September 20, 2011

From the beginning of the month of Elul until the end of the High Holiday season Jews traditionally recite Psalm 27 each morning and evening. You might have heard it, the one that starts “The Lord is my… Read More


Poetry After Auschwitz

By On August 3, 2011

“There can be no poetry after Auschwitz.” This quote is attributed to Theodor Adorno, a German-born philosopher and poet. The sentiment provides the title for a poem, “Poetry after Auschwitz,” by San Francisco-based slam poet Daphne Gottlieb.… Read More


Pears, Breasts, and Life

By On January 31, 2011

At 76 years old, the work of Linda Pastan–two-time National Book Award finalist and the former poet laureate of Maryland–is still playful and sensual. For instance, the poem “Pears” from her new… Read More


A Jewish Beat Poet’s Final Bow

By On October 21, 2010

Jack Micheline was one of the first Beat poets–but you wouldn’t want to call him that to his face. Micheline was raised in the Bronx, in a Russian immigrant neighborhood that he called… Read More