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Not Not a Jew

‘Attention must be paid’ so said Willy Loman’s wife

I’ve been neglecting my four most recent creations: A three year old, a two-and-a-half-year old, a two-year-old and a one-and-a-half year old. (Though all very recent, they represent fifteen years of  intensive on-and-off work.) They come to mind … but then I enshrine my time on other things. Time passes. I swallow hard and slap the side of(…)

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Page 1 – Not not a Jew

*****Page 1 ***** Why leave Berlin for Paris? An unemployed man with no friends, Eli G., with a wife, Vera, and one child to feed, Karl, got fifty-one mark a month (1931) in relief. Vera budgeted: Per month = 51 mark rent, electricity, heat, outings = 32.50 mark feed family = 18.50 mark Per day           (…)

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Heard sobs coming from my bookcase

Last night I woke because the usual velvety silence (punctuated by the sound of an occasional tiny caïque in which a solitary fisherman softly put-putts through the moonlight or a disoriented rooster crowing) was interrupted. I could swear I was hearing the sound of  weeping. I sat up. It wasn’t coming from outside on either terrace, above or below, I climbed down(…)

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Jerusalem meets Not Not a Jew

Met my visiting friend Sandra Zemor for lunch. Sandra’s an often-exhibited  Paris-based Israeli artist. It’s a drizzly day. I’m tired because I was up reading almost the whole night but hadn’t wanted to cancel. Thinking that perhaps Sandra would enjoy some New York-style deli food in a place where the ghosts of New York Jewish immigrants still wander and nosh, I text(…)

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Review: Not Not a Jew

In the midst of these brutal days (slaughters in Paris, slaughters in Beirut, slaughters in Nigeria, slaughters in Tel Aviv), that have bled blame, reprisals, pleas for tolerance, fear, aggression, turmoil, bewilderment, enough impending doom to unsettle even the toughest among us, a young professor actually read and thought about my new novella. Gratefully received, especially at a(…)

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What’s NOT NOT A JEW about?

“In 1930s Berlin, Eli G. is an abstracted young Jewish painter addled by Marxist idealism and tangled memories of his mother and the shtetl. Longing to move to Paris, Eli feverishly paints maps and watches the baby while his wife Vera gives up her ambition of becoming a doctor and works as an accountant. This is where Not(…)

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Unimagined

I was attending a small liberal arts college just outside of Mexico City on the Taluca Road overlooking Popocatépetl volcano under which Malcolm Lowry’s hero drinks himself to death. I was nineteen. I’d missed my bus back to the city after class that day so I stuck out my thumb to hitchhike and was picked up by two good looking(…)

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