I Want to Fall Like This: Selected Poems of Rukhl Fishman, A Bilingual Edition

Overview

I Want To Fall Like This showcases the inspired poetry of Ruhkl Fishman (1935-1984), the youngest and only American-born Yiddish poet of the "Yung Yisroel." This group of young poets and prose writers from across the world settled in Israel after World War II, and used Yiddish, instead of Hebrew, to bridge the gaps across time and place.

Readers can trace Fishman's American influences to Malka Heifetz Tussman, the Yiddish modernist poet, who was Fishman's mentor and role model ...

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I Want to Fall Like This showcases the inspired poetry of Rukhl Fishman.

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Overview

I Want To Fall Like This showcases the inspired poetry of Ruhkl Fishman (1935-1984), the youngest and only American-born Yiddish poet of the "Yung Yisroel." This group of young poets and prose writers from across the world settled in Israel after World War II, and used Yiddish, instead of Hebrew, to bridge the gaps across time and place.

Readers can trace Fishman's American influences to Malka Heifetz Tussman, the Yiddish modernist poet, who was Fishman's mentor and role model and from whom she derives her literary style, as seen in her preference for free verse and sparing use of rhyme, her delight in puns and wordplay. Yet in subject matter, Fishman's poetry differs greatly from the poetry of her contemporaries. Neither erotic, biblical, nor political, her poetry concentrates instead on simple subjects – nature and animals and the world around her. What makes her poems brilliant are their ability to illuminate these subjects with fresh curiosity and intimacy.

Her later poetry reveals a far less rosy view of the world around her, paralleling changes in her own life. As Fishman matured and her health turned poor, she began to ponder the passage of time by viewing nature through a darker and more restrictive lens, creating some of her most thoughtful and stirring work, all of which is captured and expertly translated in I Want to Fall Like This.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
A bilingual (Yiddish/English) selection of the spare, lyric poetry of the late Rukhl Fishman (1935-1984), an American-born, Israeli poet who wrote in the Yiddish language. Translated by Seymour Levitan with an introduction by David G. Roskies. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814325414
  • Publisher: Wayne State University Press
  • Publication date: 2/28/1998
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 5.51 (w) x 9.02 (h) x 0.51 (d)

Meet the Author

Rukhl Fishman is the author of two volumes of verse in Yiddish, Zun iber alts (Sun Over Everything) and Derner nokhn regn (Thistles After Rain), and two bilingual selections of poems in Yiddish and Hebrew, Shamayim B'eysev/Himl tsvishn grozn (Heaven in the Grass) and Vilde tsig (Wild She-Goat). She was awarded the prestigious Manger Prize for Yiddish literature in 1978.

Seymour Levitan was educated at the University of Pennsylvania and Simon Fraser University. His translations of Yiddish poems and stories are included in Voices Within the Ark, The Spice Box, Identifications, The Penguin Book of Yiddish Verse, A Treasury of Yiddish Stories, and other anthologies. He lives in Vancouver, British Columbia.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 10
The Sun and I 19
Springs 21
Sunned Through 23
Grapes 25
In the Beginning 29
Even as I Ride 31
Even 33
Full as a Pomegranate 35
Momma, I Can't Sleep 39
Poems for My Birthday 41
Like Sun Burning on My Neck 47
On the Ship 49
Days and Nights 53
Our Springtime 79
At the Foot of the Tree 87
My Poems Fall Like Snow 95
Now You Are Quieter 101
Heaven in the Grass 109
Three Shadows 111
More Heat 113
Oh My Grey End-of-Summer Orchard 115
Ring after Ring 119
At the Everlasting Barrier 125
Beware 135
Little Blue Flames 145
Just Look at Him! 165
I Beg of You 169
What Do I Do? 175
My Wild She-Goat 187
They Come 199
On My Desk 201
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