"ירושלים מקום שהכל זוכרים
ששכחו בו משהו
אך הם אינם זוכרים מה שכחו"
"Jerusalem's a place where everyone remembers
he's forgotten something
but doesn't remember what it is."
[Yehuda Amichai - From the Songs of Zion the Beautiful]
These lines from a Yehuda Amichai poem from the 1980s can be your gateway to the complexities of connecting to Jerusalem in particular, and Israel as a whole.
Are our biblical commitments still binding? How far dare we critique them?
Amichai offers a rich text tied into modern and ancient contexts.
In my classes the mystery of Hebrew words will unfold to create deep understandings and personal contemporary insights.
Even if reading poetry is not something you ordinarily would do, this is an experience you will want to try.
[יהודה עמיחי - משירי ארץ ציון וירושלים]
And Amichai is not the only one. We will read the great Hebrew classics, like Bialik and Tchernichovski. We will explore the Israeli poets who accompanied the early years of the state like Leah Goldberg and Alterman. Erez Biton and Roni Somech will lead us into the pain and beauty of Mizrachi voices while contemporary writers Eliaz Cohen and Adi Keisar will challenge us with the most recent heartbeat of the country.
The Jewish book shelf is a dynamic and exciting one, and new volumes are being added right as you are reading these lines. It is yours; it is ours - join the club.
Rachel is a freelance Jewish education consultant in curriculum development for Israel and Holocaust education. Rachel opens for her audiences a window to Israeli society through literature; through stories, poems and songs of the best of Israel’s writers, she invites listeners to engage with Israel in an innovative way.
Until 2008 she had been the Academic Director of Distance learning programs at The Jewish Agency for Israel, Department of Education....