Muriel’s Gift

Rukeyser’s Poems on Jewish Themes by Helen Engelhardt From the Summer 2015 issue of Jewish Currents To be a Jew in the twentieth century Is to be offered a gift. SO BEGINS the most well-known and beloved of the poems written by Muriel Rukeyser (1913-1980), who was astonished when the Reform synagogue movement included it […]

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April 10: Big Sister

Miriam, the sister who safeguarded the baby Moses during his journey in a basket along the Nile, and then led freed Hebrew women slaves in song and dance after they crossed the Red Sea, died at 126 on this date in 1274 BCE, according to Jewish biblical calculations (which count the Earth as 5,774 years […]

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Daughters and Fathers at Passover Time

by Susan Reimer-Torn A watercolor entitled Father and Daughter, painted in Poland in 1876, fills me with bittersweet longing. It was painted by a 21-year-old Maurycy Gottlieb just two years before the promising young man’s untimely death. (I wonder if that accounts for its intimation of inevitable parting.) A bearded patriarch is embracing a pre-adolescent […]

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