Straight, or: Forward

An American sentence: Jews wouldn't exist without faith, regardless of whether God exists. What's an 'American Sentence'? Allen Ginsberg, inventor of the American Sentence, felt that the haiku didnโ€™t work as well in English. Ginsberg decided to remove the line structure of the haiku, maintaining the requirement of 17 syllables total. He felt that removing… Continue reading Straight, or: Forward

Prayer book party ’22

An Israeli tradition On Friday, our daughter's first grade class had their siddur (prayer book) party, which is considered a milestone for Orthodox Jewish children in Israel. Our daughter's school is unusual in Israel in that half the student body identifies as religious (Orthodox) and the other half identify as non-religious (i.e., secular), unlike the… Continue reading Prayer book party ’22

Time, or: Space

An American Sentence in 12 words Inspired by Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel z"l (1907 โ€“ 1972) The Sabbath is a #palace constructed in time, rather than in space. https://twitter.com/kaddish_s/status/1504020662503067649 The prompt: #palace (#storyin12) https://twitter.com/storyin12/status/1504019648450379776/ What's an 'American Sentence'? Allen Ginsberg, inventor of the American Sentence, felt that the haiku didnโ€™t work as well in English.… Continue reading Time, or: Space

Nice Jewish boy, or: The evil inclination

Indistinct chatter as I made my way through the door, past the principal's office, down the hall; School aides, most of whom I knew from my high school years , stared at me, as if I were covered in glitter or stardust; The head aide smiled all nervous-like and said, "It's nice to see you… Continue reading Nice Jewish boy, or: The evil inclination

Ten Commandments, or: Ten Utterances

My 1st Tetractys In Jewish tradition the Decalogue is referred to as 'Ten Utterances'. Indeed, 'Ten Utterances', rather than 'Ten Commandments'... Principles to live by. To refer to these as 'Ten Commandments' dismisses the rest of God's Torah Law. Six hundred and thirteen is the number of commandments Judaism's said to have. At Sinai, an… Continue reading Ten Commandments, or: Ten Utterances

Jewish blog v. Jewish blogger

Then v. Now In 2014, I began my journey into the blogosphere through the Times of Israel, writing about issues related to Israel and Judaism. Then, after my father died in 2018, I blogged at TOI throughout my year of Jewish mourning; and, following that, I launched The Skeptic's Kaddish here at WordPress. At first,… Continue reading Jewish blog v. Jewish blogger

Jews, #enduringly stubborn, survive

I was rebuked on Twitter... Since the beginning of 2022, I've been actively responding to various poetry prompts on Twitter, many of which set particular word limits. One such prompt is the #4WordsPoet, which offers a new prompt word every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday; and - on February 4th the prompt word was 'enduringly', to… Continue reading Jews, #enduringly stubborn, survive

Synagogue services, or: Staying home

An American sentence: Synagogue services make me out a liar, as does staying home. What's an 'American Sentence'? Allen Ginsberg, inventor of the American Sentence, felt that the haiku didnโ€™t work as well in English. Ginsberg decided to remove the line structure of the haiku, maintaining the requirement of 17 syllables total. He felt that… Continue reading Synagogue services, or: Staying home