Page 72 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 7 (1948-1949)

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JEWISH BOOK ANNUAL
60
The major theme of his book is the moral that after a catastrophe
new life cannot be built with tears, but with sweat and faith.
Alike in size and under the same imprint is Abraham Zack’s
collection of poems,
M it Ash Oifn Kop
(With Ashes on the Head).
As a poet Zack does not seek new forms or a new approach. His
has been and still is the way of poetic simplicity and honesty.
The 54 lyric poems and one dramatic poem are surcharged with
pain and indignation. Zack, the poet, has remained true to his
calling and abilities.
Hayim Graade, one of the most productive Yiddish poets of
high calibre, is a young man in his early thirties. He came into
secular Yiddish literature directly from the religious world of the
moralist
Muserniks
and he immediately occupied an important
place in Yiddish verse. In his new book,
Farvoksene Vegn
(Aban-
boned Ways — Paris, Jewish Folksfarband), Graade closes the
pre-war period of his writings. He proves how many Yiddish
poets had a premonition of a catastrophe, but could not foresee the
size of the destruction. Graade has recently published a book,
Palitim Lider
(Refugee Poems), on his experiences as a refugee in
Russia. In the poems written during the catastrophe are to be
found a bright and lofty faith as well as optimism, but in the
poems before the catastrophe we sense only dark destruction
which is summarized in the poem “Lamentations.” Graade pos-
sesses a rich, streaming style, a musical rhythm and a natural
rhyme, a characteristic which is outstanding in Yiddish lyric
poetry.
Resonant in sound, true in color, and perfect in form are the
poems in Moshe Schulstein’s
A Boim Tzvishn Churvos
(A Tree
Among Ruins — Paris, Oifsnai). He is at his best as a poet when
writing on themes of social significance. Schulstein experienced
the Nazi pest in occupied Paris, and his book, rich in content, is a
lyrical report of his ordeal during these terrible years. Although
we feel in his poetry the ashes of our martyrs, they vibrate with
hope and the lust for life.
REMINISCENCES OF WILNA GHETTO
Dr. Mark Dvozhetzky’s
Yerushalayim Delita in Kamf un
JJmkum
(Jerusalem of Lithuania in Battle and Annihilation —
Paris, Jewish National Workers Alliance of America) are the
author’s reminiscences of his experience in the ghetto of Wilna
during the Nazi-occupation. The author is both a scholar and an
essayist with a precise style. These virtues are fully represented
in the book. Dr. Dvozhetzky stresses the cultural aspect of ghetto-