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Ronen Altman Kedar Cover: Ravit Dahan Izhki, a detail from a poetry poster Printing: Amir Or Festival board: Box , Tel Aviv , Israel helicon helicon. For a decade the SIPF has served as an opportunity for various dialogues: This year, even before the SIPF opens its gates to the audience, it will hold a three days international poetry performance workshop, collaboratively organised by Literature Across Frontiers and Helicon as part of the Word Express project under the auspices of the EU and the British Council.

Three young Hebrew and Arabic poets from Israel and three young international poets will meet for a poetic dialogue, and later on present it on the festival stage. Wishing to exchange views in this international agora and to learn from the insight of poetry, throughout these years we have invited overseas poets to share this poetic search with us. Poets from five continents have come to read their poems and to listen to others at these poetry gates. We take again the opportunity of this international gathering to make the voices of poets heard, as a counterbalance to the politics of fear.

We believe artists and poets touch the hearts of many in society, creating from the raw material of thought and feeling the very essence from which we create our tomorrow. It is their work that often. We believe in getting together, and in dialogue, for the simple reason that we have no other sane way to deal with disagreements. We say no to hatred, fear and indifference, for we still believe in the power of human spirit and in our striving towards a better future of tolerance, pluralism, understanding and peace.

This year, the SIPF takes the 10 Commandments as its theme, and invites us all to explore the various ethical aspects of society, culture, and our own lives. The first three imperatives of the Decalogue refer to God, faith and worship, whereas the rest form a universal code of ethics. Nevertheless religions have been a chief factor in human code of ethics, although not always in the best way.

Here, in our war-stricken region, religions and politics have often been dangerously mixed. Learning how to live together is especially crucial for us humans, and yet throughout history conflict has hardly been the exception.

To say the least, human history is a far from pleasing testimony to ethical behaviour. In fact, one may observe political history as a long chain of actions in which individuals and groups have been trying with varying degrees of success to suppress other individuals and groups.

As a species, exploitation and enslavement seem to have been. Socio-political structures, from families to empires, seem to have worked along the same lines for ages: But how can anyone aspiring to a free and better world agree with such a responsibility-evading conclusion? Assuming responsibility is the basic ethical action, without which there is no action but only reaction, no vision but only daydreaming. Denying our right to responsibility and self reliability is denying human dignity and integrity.

Responsibility seems to operate concentrically. Our first ring of responsibility encompasses just ourselves individually, securing our own physical survival and taking care of our health and well being. Obviously enough, in our second life ring, responsibility includes taking care of our children and families, and in an additional ring — our friends and colleagues. But does responsibility end with these inner rings? Can one ignore his responsibilities for the community or humankind and hope to achieve the maximal good for himself only?

Individual good and the common good are not contradictory, and in fact they are inseparable. At the end of the day we ARE interdependent, and to achieve our survival objective we need to extend the range of our responsibilities further. The next rings of responsibility have to do with striving for the maximal good of our associates, city, and whole society. The maximal good we can hope for would simply mean an action that takes responsibility for more people or for more life rings, and harms none or the least possible.

It has been propounded by all great philosophies and religious teachings, and yet we fail to apply it once and for all in our individual endeavours and our social structures. Starvation, war, overpopulation and pollution are not the effects of our lack of technology or resources, but of our lack of responsibility.

How, then, can we gain more responsibility? At the end of the day it is the human desire to do good and our potential for responsibility that seem to be our quest: This is the key with which we can open the treasure house of our common riches, the very human qualities that poetry and art strive to enhance: His poems and novels have been translated extensively.

He has coordinated courses on liberal thought in Murcia, Cartagena and El Escorial. Tosigo Ardento [1] Coming out of the mist in the cold of a sad sea the great health spas float the long wooden walkways disappear as in a misted mirror. Lone deckchairs awnings folded. And you hear the break of an ancient wave. End of summer, the first chills, at dusk; some men grappling with boards doors and windows in the ramshackle beach-house.

And the car, black, huge magnificent, like a funeral hearse. I see the beach distancing from the window the wind moves the palm trees. Meanwhile I grow old. Some Girls go by in bare feet on the sand, they protect their necks with their arms around their jerseys.

I hear them laugh. Their faces are lost in the mist. The waves break slowly. Like smooth dying animals the moorings creak. With the sound of the sea the music of some distant speakers arrives, an arcade of bumpers.

Yet, even as a child I was fascinated by reading and felt the urge to write. And even now, at the age of sixty eight I still believe that the one thing we should aspire to is to know what not to write, to know how to erase anything that should remain in the realm of non-existence.

As to the Ten Commandments: In my case - I am not a believer and do not follow the rules and decrees of any religion. You shall have no other gods before Me. Ortsion Bartana, born in Tel Aviv in , is a poet, prose writer, essayist and researcher of Literature. He has published nine collections of poetry, as well as short stories, novels, literary criticism, and literary research. His literary works and essays have been translated and published in periodicals in about 30 languages, as well as in books in English, French, Russian, Swedish and Georgian.

N club in Israel. His father took him to a huge sea with a huge spade and a huge pail, told him: And in no time at all — from sand he created elevators and windows, beams, steel. For the cockroaches he housed there, it was a festivity. They ran around in all directions, they made their century with fear and with insolence. And then, fed up, within a belch or two Suppose here they call it: Decades he destroyed them.

Lord Almighty, what happened? After all they were only made from beach sand. And apart from this, thus or thus, even when solid-state is changed, everything stays forever, keeps dancing in circles. Surely, just now, just recently, they discovered a kind of rule of preservation to all She has published 9 volumes of poetry, among them If not in a hurry , Food , and Convalescence Her poems have been translated into 11 languages and published in periodicals and in four books in Russian Food, , English Night, Morning, NY, Hungarian and Arabic Her literary criticism, was published in The Tastes of Reading , and her essays on culture, Judaism, and ethics in Cries and Whistles Her professional research produced six books and numerous essays, especially on the Russian context of Jewish literature and culture, and on the role of mysticism in modern Hebrew poetry.

When I am left alone, I have no me at all, I have only not this, not that, not him and alas, alas -And every one is a stone. Ana Blandiana pen name of Otilia Valeria Rusan is the author of 22 books: Her works have been translated into 23 languages, including Chinese and Korean. She was awarded many national and international prizes for poetry, including the Herder Prize , the Vilenica International Prize and Premio Internazionale Camaiore Blanaiana also received three interdictions to publish in her country, in , , and In , Ana Blandiana re-founded the Romanian P.

Centre and became its president. Non-Choice Brought to the great judgement That ends with the sending to earth, I, found innocent, Have been given the right to choose myself. But neither man, nor woman, Nor animal did I want to be, Nor a bird, or plant.

The seconds are heard dropping From the great right to choose. They are heard breaking against the rock: No, no, no, no. In vain brought to the judgement, In vain innocent.

Fall The prophets in the desert have died out And angels with drooping wings Are led in columns And gathered in the squares. I still remember the surreal feeling from a few years ago, when I published a collection of poems titled Poems Yet how many of these 40 years have borne the intensity of poetry?

A couple of months? Since, obviously, only the flashes must be accounted for. But how many flashes could have possibly happened in 40 years of poetry? Which is the quantity of poetry a life can stand? The saying goes that the cells forming a body keep dying and being replaced by other cells, each and every second, and so every seven years you are another person, with a completely different structure, in the effect that events from the your past seem to you more foreign than a scene from Dostoyevsky or Flaubert.

Re: Zorn's Next Major Project

Mother cried for weeks, removed the pouches her tears had filled surgically. Enter the diamond cutter from Bruges, and cherries jubilee. But who am I to judge, I who am bound to no one, I who never let go. No matter where she makes her final bed, the plot my father saved for her, or cramped beside her beloved. Or the matchstick girl who refused to eat and let her hair grow wild. I was the obedient child. But when she dies the truth will out.

I am her daughter. I will be otherwise engaged. Who is this stranger I must be kind to? She went under the knife and dyed her hair blonde.

After a splendid day at the beach he dropped dead in the hall, she in the kitchen saran-wrapping cold cuts. The next year she spent looped on pep-up pills, playing duplicate bridge, traversing the distance between them that way. I crept down to rec rooms foraging for crumbs from pimply-faced boys, their clumsy tongues. Surfacing for air, I too smelled of Old Spice. I was a stitch in her side, a splinter, a thorny reminder.

I was her darling, her liebchen, her sweetie pie. Oh, Mother, what big eyes you have, and wide. I asked if the mice knew they were nude, picturing my dog cringing under the kitchen table when I trim her for the summer, and how sheep bolt and duck when they are shorn.

He was a scientist. Like that time at Crystal Lake we campers all prepubescent girls were treated to a skinny dip on the Fourth. All ran in and splashed with great abandon, all, that is, except for me, mummy wrapped in garish beach towel. But Wiedergutmachung never was meant to pay for blood, only for what a concrete number could be attached to—factory, practice, butcher shop.

On the tongue the syllables sat dense, inert, like the potato knodel we ate on Sundays. The house held other pungencies: Sometimes in spring the knodel contained a sour cherry. Since then my mother dances, but only in dream. Like the little mermaid, she is clumsy now on land, all the senses dwindling.

The milky scrim that dims her sight, the front tooth that insists on falling out. No loving lips to kiss away the pain, no gold coins tucked beneath her pillow. No sun-drenched sailor to slip between the sheets where she is waiting, in a nightgown, to be taken.

She never said the pain was so great she wanted to die. And that I should do it. Or take those Hartogs, stingy as sin although he had diamonds—all the people who peopled our lives when I was growing up.

She reported their failings with great satisfaction and how they made so little effort to keep up. Like me—it had been so long she barely recognized my face. Still, she spared me: Karst, poor as a church mouse, climbing the stairs each Sunday with fresh flowers and chocolates and a kiss to each wrist.

She really did look peaceful, like in the movies, her lipstick being the one wrong note, too dark. We sent my mother off in a plain pine box, dust thou art, to dust thou shalt return, though I defied custom and placed her black alligator pocketbook in the coffin with her, the one she kept close by those last twelve bedridden years, mirror, house keys, one hundred dollars in small bills, two quarters in change and in a zippered compartment, an extra four thousand in cash plus her stash of Percocet.

This was the bag she might have taken to the opera, Tosca perhaps, or Der Rosenkavalier, her favorite, where the Marschallin falls for a younger man who will leave her too soon for a woman his own age.

Because she is wise, the Marschallin, and wishes to be remembered fondly, she will bid him an airy adieu. And there is Saturn with its icy rings, cosmic dust we are, the distance between here and there inconceivable, the ice, the pulverized rock, a planet so light it could float on water, the years it took to find the mother whose hair was black, fingernails red, the gold choker she used to wear, cold at first touch, but now around my neck, giving off heat.

In a sack, Father, I carry them He said if everyone jumped in the lake, would you jump too? Father, I cannot even imagine your face In the one snapshot of us on the bridge in Baden Baden the half smile on your lips is unfamiliar you are standing behind me on a step to make yourself taller, leaner I am clutching my purse with both hands And your hand on my shoulder— it is heavy, Father, it is heavy 22 II cedar tree.

The Day Before The day before the war I dreamt you left me for another woman, a native of your homeland who grew up singing the same silly songs. Even in my dream I knew you loved me still, but this was different: The day before the war you dreamt that I was young again, black bangs down to my eyebrows, my breasts pert and impudent.

We were walking hand in hand, the leaves already turned a fiery red. The day the war broke out the TV switched its focus, showed us billowing yellow clouds and visions in green. By the time the first tinge of pink stains the sky we are driving untrafficked roads to the terminal where many small surgeries are performed.

Too soon you sling your black satchel over your shoulder, a traveler bound to a land sundered by rage. I head back to town in my blue Caravan with only the shadow of heft, the echo of parry and thrust. I see you squeezed in a narrow space, oppressed by loss and the flesh of strangers. In fact you are flying home via Zurich and the cool remove of stewards in starched shirts, the wilderness of your chest still fragrant with the smell of sex.

Tonight an unfettered moon will graze terrains of our own forgetting. And once this land was defined as a promise of milk, a promise of honey. Now half brothers fight for a dunam of earth, a ceiling to count on. Go out in the street and play Russian roulette. Go out to a club and find fresh young bodies blown to bits, their garments still sparkling. Now the forest is burning. Charred skeletons of trees provide neither food nor shelter.

Goats grind their teeth on whatever grows. Now the camera freezes on demonstrators from both sides wearing baseball caps and faded T-shirts, as though fitted by the same tailor in a uniform of rage. Once these heights were volcanic— the basalt rock remains look like ground pepper, or stubble on a cheek. How to survive this place where blood feuds last for eons, where sticks and stones and absolutes reign and nothing, even sin, is original? Shamayim, they say here, there waters, meaning sky.

We all live in terrible countries. Everywhere people are rattled, perched at the lip of a great divide. In the territories the air thickens while over the Green Line armed guards patrol maternity wings serving both Arab and Jew.

Last night I lost my footing in the dark. At noon you tripped over a sand-camouflaged curb. This was before the quake struck the rift running from Cyprus to Syria. Over and over, over the radio, an almost loving refrain. Full alert transmitted on waves and the reserves pack up, put on hold, leave the familiar to its own devices. When threat descends from the north, no ritual remains, not fasting, not feasting.

Now terror and resolve rub shoulders. Small ruptures of the heart. Some will return minus limbs. Others to leave ciphers of blood writ on volcanic rock. Always the heat, severe and blinding. Two tamarisks, their calcite buds shriveled into little white corpses.

His whole body gripped by vertigo, an urge to hurl himself down into his former life where two boys sport around the kindling fire pitching broom twigs into the flames to make them flare, the wild one, oh, beloved Ishmael, and the one who is fair. It shows his hand knows when to stop and when to let go. So when he pines again for the other woman it comes as the blade comes, swift precision. I could have made my exit then, transformed myself into penumbra. First birth then death, the grand finale, and in between, the well-honed knife, the glistening fruit, and all the major and minor incisions.

As my two daughters never were, but from the start belonged to him, the way he fondled them, their corkscrew curls. You must sing to goats and they will come faster if you sing their name.

Milcah came to me as I came to my mother, unbidden. She let down her milk for me alone. All goats bleat and I know them all by their bleat, as God knows us by a turn of phrase, or the way we bow our heads. That day an unnatural shriek I thought was fear, for the land had grown strangely dark, as if the sun had shrouded herself in a muddy kutonet. I raced to the far pasture to find Milcah trapped between two fields, her horns and neck caught beneath a fence.

She turned, sensing my approach. And then the crack. They dragged me away, the girls, their arms sheathed with silver bangles. The sound of little bells. The mules straining under their load of barley, flagons of wine, crushed spices. But Milcah trapped between two fields, her lovely horns, her neck.

You must bury the dead else they will rise. If you do not turn toward what you are twined to you are not fit to walk this earth. I am waiting for my mother under a shower of leaves. We used to go for walks, Grandmother and I, she smelling of talc, cotton dress abloom with lilacs, swollen feet in laced-up oxfords.

She was massive and old as grandmothers were in those days, a giant oak I feared would topple over, crush me flat. My mother strolls in silk, trails Chanel, wears shoes of fine Italian leather. Phased out by the sleek Polaris, its cargo of nuclear missives. These objects we launch with great fanfare— silver bullet, satellite, Hubble, earthly concourse picked up from afar, buzz and static this way and that, what would a diligent scribe incise on a blank slate under a radically gleaming star?

What do they know of this place alive with palm and sea grape and vestiges of old plantations? Bougainvillea flare like torches. Trade winds riffle four rivers. What manna to bring back to the grey hull from here where once the coin of the land was sugar?

No reason, no wrath, just some chancy chunk of intergalactic scrap. Like the bone 35 we toss at Spot, not caring where it came from. Not to be saved or read or even scanned. So much for our meteoric rise. So much for the peaceful death we planned. There are rain forests with five species of monkeys.

Birds and fish flashing neon colors. In short a land of plenty where no one goes hungry, no movies, no Chinese restaurants, no karaoke bars. We are all visitors. What place is this, Eden? But gnats bite our ankles and we have no repellent, no pills for depression, no shade at high noon.

At night the stars are magnificent, but after a while even they grow old. Or is it us and the sea which is way too salty. And the god who oversees our lot, casting a liquid eye on everything that moves or is still—steam rising from a red snapper stew, crushed berries in a makeshift drinking gourd—is he too a visitor standing out in a crowd, not speaking the language or merely one in disguise, staying for good?

Others fall into ditches, heaped over layers of bone. No matter how, spirits do not settle down, but rise in our throats speaking in voices we know: Beware the dark one. Collect what is owed. Keep the knives honed. We are as one transfixed, chin tilted skyward, traces of salt on forehead and cheek. They could depart from window or door or the little toe of the left foot, if they wished.

They do not wish. And he replied ," if Arthur Rubinstein walked by and somebody called him a 'dirty kike'-- would he knock him out with a concert? She did not identify me years have passed since the night I aimed at her a gun that pierced holes in the clouds that I hid under the pillow.

The first time I approached her she said that a painting squad is worse than a shooting squad, and that she has to bath to remove all the brushes they wedged in her. That evening in the twilight zone, at the edge of the three steps between the school gate and a loose tile before the crossing I knew there was no chance of embrushing with her.

And now what to say behind her back? Maybe that her cheek bones became very pointed? That rust clung to the arrows that once flew from her eyelashes? Or to say that also today on the mines hidden in her body are charcoal painted the next explosion ricochets. The salesgirl at the bakeshop has dyed the ends of her tresses with yellow white black borrowed from the body of a leopardess. Judah Maccabee is a street in an upscale neighborhood of north Tel Aviv, named for the hero of the Hanukkah story.

The Shemo bakery belongs to a national chain — but this is not an advertisement. The point is that the banal, commercial location is the setting for something if not miraculous, then at least out of the ordinary. Not the array of baked goods but rather the salesgirl is the extraordinary sight, a near-sphinx, part human, part wild feline.

She suggests a lithe and colorful sensuality, echoing the decorative aspects but belying less salubrious properties of the products she sells. Perhaps the man distracted by jungle thoughts has come into the shop to buy pastry for family or guests. At this time of year, though, most bakery stops are for the Hanukkah treat sufganiyot, which are called doughnuts in Britain and on the east and west coasts of North America, bismarcks in the Midwest, beignets in Louisiana and France and bombolini in Italy.

The deep-fried treats are Berliners in some parts of Germany, while in Berlin itself they are Pfankuchen, not to be confused with pancakes of any stripe. When told that peasants have no bread to eat, Marie Antoinette supposedly riposted: Apparently, though, Jean-Jacques Rousseau coined the phrase well before she became the last Queen of France.

In any case, the idea is that bread is a necessity whereas cake is frivolous. Any life worth living has fleeting bits of sweetness in the mouth, pardonable sins, momentary celebrations. Ronny Someck was born in Baghdad in , came to Israel as a child and has published 11 books of poetry.

There were half-green lawns, miserly sprinklers and one scary moment when my daughter vanished from view. Afterwards the children traded roles and the cart continued to sail like a pleasure ship in the puddles of words choked in two languages. I so wanted to be a captain or a deck boy or even just a lifebuoy on that voyage, and I was madly envious of the children, who had they paper and pencil would in the space of 10 minutes have signed dream treaties.

And I remembered your hand's wing landing on my actual daughter's shoulder In a Catalan city empty of birds. She apologized that her Arabic is made of Oriental class in her school. And you said that it was better than the leftover words Made in Baghdad that were choked in my mouth. David Dvaash Shalit Choreography: Today I speak in memory of the words that once were stuck in my mouth, in memory of the teeth wheels that grounded syllables under the tongue and smelled the gun powder in the gap between the muzzle and the dusky lips.

I dreamt then of smuggling the words that were packed as stolen goods in mouth's warehouses, of tearing the cardboard wrappings and pulling out the alphabet toys. The teacher used to lay her hand on my shoulder saying that Moses too stammered yet nonetheless he reached Mount Sinai.

My mountain was the girl who set by me in class, and I did not have fire in my burning bush to blaze, in front of her eyes, the words that were burnt by my love for her.

Oggi parlo in memoria dei vocaboli impigliatisi un tempo nella mia bocca, in memoria delle ruote dentate che sbriciolavano sillabe sotto la lingua e fiutavano polvere da sparo nello spazio tra il palato e le labbra oscurate. Ho sognato allora di contrabbandare le parole camuffate da merce rubate nei magazzini della bocca, di strappare il cartone ed estrarre i giocattoli dell'alfabeto. Il mio monte era una bambina seduta in classe accanto a me, ma il roveto della lingua non infiammava innanzi a lei, le parole arse dal mio amore per lei.

The man called Ping The woman - Pong And in the gap between their bodies love struck as a rug. Warp of nakedness snuggled In weft which knit a gold dragon Between his legs. Grandmothers, no matter where, are always Rivers of honey flowing from mountains of heart To dead-end streets.

The mouth is like a stable gate Kicked open by a horse — a word. Oh night, dug in her armpit like a trap the curve of her shouldear, and the light of fireflies called nipples. Horses are illiterate and color blind But in the soft rubbing of mane against mane I learned to affix love like a horseshoe.

All night you were pounded by thoughts. Your skin was stretched on the body drum. Your head is wet, anticipating the hammer touch. The heel that slips to the shoe will lift the moment in which you will come closer to me. It's track 3 of their cd 'Election Year'. Aushwitz," we shouted the time they took him away to the asylum, And he managed to put his hand into a pocket and peel off Cellophane from the candies he threw at us.

Loneliness is stuck like a pencil in the belly of the sharpener. It is so still today the air cloys about our eyes and we squint because of glare. We look hard at what might have been. We listen and taste the air. I reject rules in most things. As an anarchist, I do not believe in nation states in any form, nor in any form of centralisation, but I do believe in community and a shared ethics to ensure the individual and group rights of communities.

So I can appreciate the drive behind that as a spiritual affirmation rather than as a tool for religions to impose orders on their followers and non-followers! So where do poets come into this?

Well, for me, poets have an obligation to be political, and to comment on the deprivations of liberty many people in the world experience on a day-to-day basis. And for me, I take that obligation into enunciations on the rights of animals and ecologies in general as well. I consider myself an activist poet. But all my poetry is backgrounded against these concerns and might be read in the context of witness or protest.

Poetry was my earliest form of written expression. My mum was a poet, and it was seen in our house as the best way of expressing what one would otherwise find difficult to express.

Litevsky studied philosophy and literature at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and classical singing in the Jerusalem Academy of Music. She performed as a soloist with the Israeli Opera and various orchestras, in recitals and in recordings. She currently works as a teacher and lecturer and writes literary critisim and essays.

In the beginning there was Void. Its stare Gave birth to its idol in me. Cut in the glamorous blue of the day, In herds, it bustles around, Vigorous. Ramified, audacious Is the spread of its horns. And I am the one who Lurks in the thicket. Salman Masalha was born in in the village of Maghar in the Galilee. In he moved to Jerusalem and lived there ever since. His poems were translated into many languages and published in anthologies and poetry magazines worldwide.

For his poetry in Hebrew he was awarded the President Prize. Additionally he translated several books of poetry from Arabic into Hebrew, including collections by Sahar Khalifah and Mahmoud Darwish. Massalha publishes essays, opinion columns in newspapers, journals and anthologies in Arabic, Hebrew and other languages.

His selected essays were pulisehed in Between the Lines On Three Lies Love stands on three lies. On the pangs of conscience as you come stealthily to a married woman, whose husband left her on a Friday night.

On the jealousy of the woman who remains alone when her husband departs to revive desire that has gone quite limp, and on righteous benevolence to just one woman. Gilad Meiri, born in Jerusalem in , published three volumes of poetry: His poems have been translated into English, French and Arabic. Meiri has been the director of the Poetry Place Project www. Agi Mishol was born in in Transylvania Romania , to a family of Hungarian descent, and resides in Kefar Mordechai. She published fourteen books of poetry, including House Call , Collected and New Poems and Fauna an Flora, on which she collaborated with artist Jan Rauchwerger Her poems were translated into numerous languages and published in anthologies, literary magazines and several books in Ireland, France, Romania and the U.

Separation The ceremony was modest. A government clerk handed me your final papers. You who never graduated anything were suddenly entitled to a lovely death certificate with the symbol of the state as if you had mastered something and fulfilled all the requirements. Then she placed them side by side like a pair of matching gravestones and pressed the electric buzzer. I went down to the street walking like a little girl holding the hands of paper parents flapping in the wind.

Schachar-Mario Mordechay was born in His first poetry book The History of the Future was published in His poems have been published in major periodicals, literary supplements and internet magazines.

Falling Away Like A View or: History of the Future Again a new era has been promised. About to be born. But here is the history of its future: Somewhere at some point in time documents and papers will be required. It will be a receptionist at a government office or a security screener at an airport, but in every era somewhere in the world a gendarme is liable to demand papers. Somewhere in the world a passport will be forged.

There is no escapee without a pursuer. There is no shelter without a storm. The world is a rifle butt The night — flashing police cars. At least one person — perhaps even you? There he is, look, leaning on the parapet of the dark; boats going by downriver and cars on the bridge grab him for a fraction of a second. But manages to fall away like a view through a window. Published 13 haiku collections including Labyrinth of Vilnius and 7 collected haiku criticisms including Haiku Juomujin , co-authored with Sayumi Kamakura.

He edited 7 volumes of multilingual world-wide haiku anthologies, translated into Japanese, the latest being World Haiku His haikus were translated into many languages, including English, French, German, and Italian. For and from Haiku: A Verbal Nebula I have been writing haiku poems since , when I was about 14 years old. As you know well, Western vanguard poetry in the 20th century received some of its greatest inspiration for a new poetics from haiku translated from Japanese.

Now I am an expert of haiku writing, as prose is more important than poetry in the confused days following the prime time of our humanity. Haiku is a hyper-poem, it can function without season words, it can easily remove itself from fixed form. Haiku may not be the shortest poem, since human beings may address a cry of few syllables as the briefest and the most appealing poem, as my following haiku suggests. This mental and physical chaotic state brings up many layers from the depth of my unconscious.

A 2 line-poem shorter than haiku may be poetic, but if it is statically balanced in its 2 lines, a productive poetic tension cannot emerge. This is what is haiku for me. The figure 3 is the smallest figure for building a whole unit with substance. Reading my own haiku, I sometimes experience the excitement of the illusion. I can see this poetic genesis emerge upon the paper on which my haiku is printed, I bear witness to the verbal genesis like a hyper-personality with peaceful surprise and curiosity, not a god.

Today he is a faculty member at Sarah Lawrence College, teaching poetry and poetics. Nurske was co-translator of Words and Time: In addition, he held creative writers workshops with prisoners at Rikers Island Correctional Facility and with inner city students Ben Adan The American commanded me in gestures, dig a hole.

He tossed me a shovel but the blade had dulled and the haft was splaying so I had to rein in that strange wild energy as I opened the earth to my shins, then my knees. But I know it is just a technique to soften my resistance-perhaps in a moment he will lift me up and hold me trembling, more scared than I and more relieved.

At thigh-depth I found a layer of black loam and a tiny blue snail that seemed to give off light. The agent called my name. High above, he mimed a man kneeling, hands clasped in prayer. He must have knelt himself because I felt the muzzle pressed against the shallow furrow behind my left earlobe-a part of my body I never knew existed.

He pulled the trigger. Poetry is the silence after an eloquent speech, a sick child coughing during the virtuoso recital. God damn his eyes. That poem of ultimate divestment, scratched on a wall with a nail, survives long after the castle was razed and whoever was lord—let alone sentinel—has perished forever.

Though not particularly prone to gratitude or any kind of positive attitude, I feel very fortunate to have been allowed to give my life to this art. In the political arena, poetry is the grossly personal statement that no one has the indecency to speak. In private life, poetry is the awareness of community. I remember teaching in a prison: They are all of absolute value. We know almost nothing of ourselves; all means of exploration are crucial.

Nazareth in , writes poetry and prose. Odeh won first prize in a haiku competition of the World Haiku Association and her poems were translated and published in webzines around the world. She published one book of literary essays, I am Your Dizziness Ramalla, , and wrote two novels, unpublished to date. Amir Or, born , Tel Aviv, is the author of 9 volumes of poetry.

His poems have been published in anthologies and magazines in 36 languages, and in 5 books in English, most recently Poem and Day both by Dedalus , and Plates from the Museum of Time ArtAark Other books were published in Polish, Romanian, Arabic and Macedonian. Or studied philosophy and comparative religion at the Hebrew University, where he later lectured on the ancient Greek religion. He cofounded the Helicon Poetry Society and serves as its chief editor. Or has taught creative writing in Israel and abroad.

A Glass of Beer The perfect murder has no reasons, he said, the perfect murder needs only a perfect object, as it was in Auschwitz. Not the crematoria, of course, but as it was afterwards, outside working hours. And he fell silent looking at the froth on the beer and taking a sip.

The perfect murder is love, he said. Even the memory of gripping the throat is eternal. Even the howls that rocked my hand, even the piss that fell like grace on cold flesh, even the heel of the boot awakens another eternity, even the silence, he said, looking at the froth. Amos Oz was born in Jerusalem in He published twenty eight books of prose - novels, collections of short stories, essays and literary reviews.

His books have been published in 36 languages, including English, French, German, Arab, Finnish, Chinese and Polish, and he is the most widely-translated Israeli author. In recent years, he has been considered a candidate for the Nobel Prize in Literature. She got nauseous when afterwards He asked how much she enjoyed it on a scale of one to ten.

He had an opinion about everything, started babbling That female orgasm was less physical and more emotional. Afterward he discovered a fat mosquito on her shoulder, Squashed it, cleaned, rustled the local paper, And then fell asleep on his back, his arms stretched out in a cross, Leaving her no place to lie. And his prick shrank And fell asleep with a mosquito on it, blood revenge. She showered, combed, put on a black t-shirt that Ricco forgot In her drawer.

Day and night ideas. He published thirteen books of poetry and one novel; his latest were Introduction: Poems and Translations, both at Keshev Publishing House.

For his poetry, he was awarded the Prime Minister Prize in and He holds a degree in English Literature from the University of Haifa. I See a Mountain I see a forest I say: God, Let me be bird-screech, wind in treetops I see rain And say: God Let me be a mountain. She is a graduate of the first class of the Helicon Poetry School Her poems have appeared in various periodicals and literary supplements, and her first poetry book, Art is was published in The beauty of this city will impress me deeply, especially the dazzling light and striking colors of Provence.

Bouts of depression and hallucination or whatever you may choose to call them, will drive me to sever a piece of my earlobe, or maybe lose it in a heated brawl. She has published the following books of poetry: S — Selected Poems She was also awarded the Hubert Burda Preis for young European poetry Her poems have been translated into nine languages and have been published in anthologies, poetry magazines, and three books in Slovakian , Slovenian and German Club and the Association of Literary Translators of Serbia.

What are good materials for a poem? Are any words undesirable for poetry? Feel it and taste it. If you think so, maybe you never experienced sharing a refrigerator with anyone.

If you have such You can write poetry about everything. Because if you are a poet, you will arouse the great meanings and truths from the small things which surround us all. Yes, poets often use irony. Or use shop windows, or missing the sun. As always, they are good observers of and witnesses to the world and to things which other eyes may not be able to see and recognize.

They cannot change the world, but they can change our. His poems have been translated into 15 languages and published in five books in German, including his Selected Poems in Swedish: He has translated from Hebrew into German, including books by S. Carmi and Dan Pagis. He has also translated extensively from German into Hebrew, including books by Goethe, Schlegel and Kafka among others. Maybe A Poem Sunrise sets the trees alight. Fine gossamer weils hang between the eye and the scene. Virgin green covers clots of soil free of cement.

At the speed of a typhoon we have grown tycoons. Dug a hole for our poor. We harmed and were harmed. We defrauded the survivors of the holocaust. Daily casualties, murdered, and not — the media is celebrating. What to do with the sane among us with the good hearted, with the welcoming? Life stirs in the sky. Flocks of birds, rapturous throngs, speed and wane, speed and wane.

You find something that you have sought in vain for days and days. Destruction strolls on the other side of the street, back and forth. Ronny Someck was born in Baghdad in and came to Israel in Arundhathi Subramaniam, born , is a poet, editor, curator and writer on culture and spirituality.

She divides her time between Bombay and a yoga centre in southern India. She did her Masters in English literature at the University of Bombay, and after a brief teaching stint escaped to the life of a freelancer, writing on literature, classical dance and theatre.

She is the author of three books of poetry, the most recent of which is Where I Live: She is also the author of the prose work The Book of Buddha Penguin, and co-editor of an anthology of Indian love poetry, Confronting Love Penguin, Her poetry has been translated into Hindi, Tamil, Italian and Spanish. Prayer May things stay the way they are in the simplest place you know.

May the shuttered windows keep the air as cool as bottled jasmine. May you never forget to listen to the crumpled whisper of sheets that mould themselves to your sleeping form. May the murmur of the wall clock continue to decree that your providence run ten minutes slow.

May nothing be disturbed in the simplest place you know for it is here in the foetal hush that blueprints dissolve and poems begin, and faith spreads like the hum of crickets, faith in a time when maps shall fade, nostalgia cease and the vigil end. The question is often implied. Probably more so in a country like India where the novel is currently enjoying its place in the sun. And why on earth write it? Recent American research claims that poets actually die sooner than other species of writers.

Besides, everyone usually stays clear of you: You rarely see a meaty royalty cheque. And if you crave fame, you have to try not to live past the age of Poetry is about allowing lunar concerns into my day. About bringing question marks rather than full stops into my life. And because it has chemistry: Because it reminds me that ideas are crunchy and things smoky. That there are passions of the mind and ideologies of the gut. Because it is, I believe, the art of the murmured voice.

If it raises its pitch, it distorts its own reality, compromises its own integrity. It is a reminder of the magic of the whisper, the sorcery of the hushed voice.

Because it allows me to inhabit a moment more fully than I would otherwise. Because it is the most vertical engagement with self that I know. Because its guile lies in taking me unawares. And yet, echoes do happen. Not audible, measurable echoes perhaps. But major shifts along internal fault lines, subtle enduring realignments.

Because it disrupts all those snug oppositions I Because of its suddenness, its toxic shock clarity, its verbal single maltness. But with every parry and thrust, with every act of glibness, with every dogmatic full stop, we move further away from the possibility of surprise. Of the startling confrontation of self with self. Which is what poetry — when it works — is all about. Zvika Szternfeld, born in Poland in , immigrated to Israel in and now lives in Haifa.

He lectures on migration and intercultural issues, moderates therapy groups and works in relationship counselling. Szternfeld, being fluent in ten languages, has translated poetry from English, German, French, Polish and Amharic. Loyalty What is loyalty, you ask me And I point to the aged barber, To his clients who have since gone bald Not a hair left on their heads Yet who return to him again and again Giving in to his blade.

I show you a smile That has sailed away, abandoned, long-gone. It has returned A stranger to the dentures, But a wrinkle at the corner of the lips Embraces it and smiles. Rafi Weichert, born in Tel Aviv in , published eight volumes of poetry, including Love-note To The World — selected poems , Slim — word sonnets Keshev, and Poems for Dar Keshev, , dedicated to his daughter.

Weichert has translated poetry from English and German, but is best known for his translations from Polish. His latest translation was Colon, selected works by Szymborska. Weichert recieved the Prime Minister Prize for his poetic work and several prizes for his translations including The Ministry of Culture and Sciences Prize and the Golden Cross from the president of Poland He also writes essays and literary criticism for numerous literary magazines and supplements.

Haris Vlavianos, born in Rome in , has published six collections of poetry, including The Angel of History short-listed for the State Poetry Prize, and most recently After the End of Beauty short-listed for the same prize and the Diavazo Prize, He also published a collection of thoughts and aphorisms on poetry and poetics, entitled The Other Place and the essays book, Minima Poetica His translations of Blake and Cummings were shortlisted for the State Translation Prize in and , respectively.

His poetry was translated into many languages and appeared in numerous European and American journals and anthologies. Vlavianos studied economics and philosophy at the University of Bristol B. Sc and politics and history M. Phil at the University of Oxford. His doctoral thesis, entitled Greece From Resistance to Civil War, was published by Macmillan He is a professor of history and the history of ideas at the American College of Greece and teaches translation theory at the European Centre for Translation.

Vlavianos is the editor of the Greek domain of the Poetry International web site www. Now, free at last, you are ready to receive her final, most precious gift with relief. You can, without remorse, shed on her grave all the tears of your hatred and finally begin to live. Scarred from this unexpected gesture forever. It surfaces to light the moment it defines itself as a question.

This question not identified with the angst or doubts of the poet but constantly pursuing the poet while he was writing whether he was conscious of this pursuit or not is now present, lies between the lines in silence patiently waiting for the one who will attempt its solution. The question finally posited in my absence makes a gesture towards poetry and is articulated in words that have hitherto been transformed into art by magic.

Its self-dedication can be taken to be nauseating narcissism. It still defends its honour by constantly putting it under question.

Its history is nothing but the history of this questioning.

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