Matthew Lippman has played an important role in my own evolution as a poet who writes on Jewish themes, so when I received an announcement regarding a crowdfunding project connected with his latest poetry collection, I was happy to support the work. Now, the book—Salami Jew—has been published, and this week I had the pleasure of reading through my copy.
A quick summary, taken from Matthew’s website:
Matthew Lippman’s latest collection of poems, Salami Jew, is an extended rumination on one man’s relationship with Judaism. In these poems Lippman grapples with and explores the power of being a Jew under the umbrella of observance/non-observance. The tension between the secular and the religious is the driving force behind these introspective, witty, and fiery poems. Salami Jew pulls no punches and does it with sensitivity, honesty, and aplomb. These poems illustrate a man struggling with his identity as a Jew, with his place in the world as a Jew, and with what it means, on a daily basis, to feel the spirit move him in this highly complex world.
Yes. This is as accurate a book description as you’re going to find. You can get a taste of the book from the title poem, which won an Anna Davidson Rosenberg Poetry Award. But you can also just go ahead and order your own copy. I think you’ll be glad you did.