Tag: connection

We Are All Karolina

by Cynthia Bruckman

“EXCUSE ME, MISS! ARE YOU JEWISH?”

I had just moved from San Francisco to New York City. I was walking down Park Avenue, heading to the 6 train after a particularly grueling day of work, when I was approached by two young men from the Chabad, an Orthodox Jewish Hasidic movement, waving what looked like willow branches at me as they shouted and ran in my direction. I had that dark-haired “Jewish look,” I suppose, that they were eagerly scouting for in rush-hour Manhattan during Sukkot. They were very excited.

“It depends on how you define ‘Jewish,’” I answered. It appeared as if I were about to be blessed by their branches, and as a newly arrived New Yorker, I needed to be blessed.

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My new bra feels like a hug

by: Kate scholl

My new bra feels like a hug
It holds fast where I need
It embraces and invites
supportively

It also lingers too long
awkwardly
It digs in places
Just like a hug does
sometimes

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Attending a Reading: Jamel Brinkley’s “A Lucky Man”

By AM Larks

It is almost 11:45 a.m. on a rare sunny day in Berkeley and instead of being outside, I am sitting in the basement lecture hall of Berkeley City College that smells vaguely of feet. My cell phone doesn’t get reception, so I cannot distract myself from my impatience and anxiety. I am anxious because I want to like this panel of authors, because I deeply respect the moderator, and because I need something to write about, to tie into, my review of Jamel Brinkley’s collection A Lucky Man.

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Book Review: Shout by Laurie Halse Anderson

By Lindsay Jamieson

New York Times best-selling author Laurie Halse Anderson departs from her beloved YA fiction with Shout, her brilliant new memoir written in verse.

Shout, published in March, 2019, marks the twentieth anniversary of Anderson’s groundbreaking novel, Speak, which told the story of Melinda, a 13-year-old who stops speaking after she’s raped. With Shout, Anderson opens a window into the personal experiences that gave her the insight, empathy, and emotion to conjure Melinda, a protagonist who, as she reveals in Shout, has become a hero (and a moniker) for survivors—men and women—of sexual assault. Anderson, like Melinda, was also raped at 13, and she is an ardent believer that words—spoken, shouted, and written—offer a “bridge to escape” the shame. As the last line of the introduction states: “This is the story of a girl who lost her voice and wrote herself a new one.”

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Fauré’s Requiem

By MAxima Kahn

The deer are here, four of them, all does, strolling through the underbrush, munching the tender leaves, picking clean the lowest branches of my flowering pear tree. It has been so long since they have spent time here in the daylight, I am glad to see them and watch their elegant dance among the trees.

I don’t go out on the porch this morning so as not to disturb the deer—and also because it is chillier. I sit inside and listen to Fauré, who takes my breath away with the beauty and perfection of his music. If I could write music like this but relevant to now, if only I could do that, be in that state of grace, what a gift and blessing and offering that would be. I would have to know that was worthwhile, that was enlarging the world, that was magnifying, in a sense, the glory of God, of creation.

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