Writer. Poet. Publicist. Resource Maven.

My Machberet

“Machberet” is the Hebrew word for notebook. Since it’s also (appropriately) one of the very first words I learned in my first Hebrew school in Brooklyn (and, until I returned to language study well into adulthood, one of the few conversational Hebrew words I still remembered), I’ve chosen it to title this blog, where I offer write-ups on Jewish news (especially of the literary sort) and occasional commentary.

Pre-Shabbat Jewish Literary Links

Label "Jewish Lit Links" is printed over what appears to be a segment of a Torah scroll.Every Friday, My Machberet presents an array of Jewish-interest links, primarily of the literary variety. Continue reading ›

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Taking Today Off

Both blogs are quiet today while I’m otherwise occupied. Thanks for your patience—and Shabbat shalom!

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Words of the Week

“I’ve learned from the ways Israelis responded to events like the Gulf War and the many, many attacks civilians have experienced over the years that the best way to deal with terror is not to let it overwhelm and defeat you, to get things back to normal as much as possible. Even though I feel jumpy in synagogue, turning to see who is in the room and feeling startled by noises, I have been going much earlier than I usually arrive each week. The only writing I have done until now has been pieces about the weekly Torah portion for the 929 website. I’ve made shiva calls and am trying to continue to support those who lost family members. I’m planning gatherings to teach Torah; our synagogue is starting new Hebrew classes and classes in Haftarah trope so others can learn this skill, which Dan Stein, Mel Wax and Rich Gottfried were so adept at.”

Source: Beth Kissileff, “When They ‘Go Low,’ We Go to Shul — Pittsburgh, a Month Later” (Times of Israel blog)

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Pre-Shabbat Jewish Literary Links

Label "Jewish Lit Links" is printed over what appears to be a segment of a Torah scroll.Every Friday, My Machberet presents an array of Jewish-interest links, primarily of the literary variety. Continue reading ›

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Words of the Week

“Every single Jew I know, and I know plenty, observant or not, confesses nowadays to being suddenly very aware of their Jewishness, and alive to the potential reaction it can provoke from both the right and, more worryingly (given its professed antiracism), the left. I, too, have been the target of anti-Semitic abuse in the last two years. If someone like me, with only the haziest notion of what the Torah or the Talmud are, can be such a target, I wonder at how much hatred is out there, waiting to boil over again.”

Source: “On Being a Jew-ish Schoolboy” by Nicholas Lezard (The New York Review of Books, with a tip from JTA)

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Pre-Shabbat Jewish Literary Links

On what appears to be a segment of an open Torah scroll, the words “Jewish Lit Links” appear.


Every Friday, My Machberet presents an array of Jewish-interest links, primarily of the literary variety. Continue reading ›

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