Abraham Sutzkever (July 15, 1913 – January 20, 2010) was an acclaimed Yiddish poet. The New York Times wrote that Sutzkever was "the greatest poet of the Holocaust."
Abraham (Avrom) Sutzkever was born on July 15, 1913 in Smorgon, Russian Empire, now Smarhoń, Belarus. During World War I, his family fled eastwards from the German invasion and settled in ... more »
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Abraham Sutzkever Poems
Did you ever see in fields of snow Frozen Jews, in row upon row? Breathless they lie, marbled and blue.
A Trip Through Africa
All the noises, all the sounds, asleep. Under seven streams sleeps fear. And the elephant, so deep in sleep, That you can sneak up, cut off his ear.
A Wagon Of Shoes
The wheels they drag and drag on, What do they bring, and whose? They bring along a wagon Filled with throbbing shoes.
Signs of paws — an animal has sown Like blue roses in the white snow's gleam, When the sun, new risen and unknown, Like a baby, casts its piercing scream —
Grains Of Wheat
Caves, gape open, Split open under my ax! Before the bullet hits me — I bring you gifts in sacks.
Smoke Of Jewish Children
Only smoke, smoke, hovering smoke, Dead children — puffs of living smoke. They call: Mama, mama! from the smoke,
Gather Me In
Gather me in from all the ends of time, from wood and stone, Embrace me like letters of a burning prayerbook. Gather me together — so I can be alone, Alone with you, and you — in all my limbs.
Digging a pit as one must, as they say. I seek in the earth a solace today. A thrust and a cut — and a worm gives a start:
Two years I longed for stalks, Silent stalks in a familiar field. When I struggled in the vise That caught me
Ode To The Dove
Seldom, once in a childhood, dazzling in rainbow of colors, An angel descends from the stars, his tune will be with you forever. An angel appeared — and vanished on the other side of the world, Over my chimney he left me a sign — a beautiful feather.
From Myself To Myself
How long is the road from myself to myself? Sometimes half a moment, That's all. Here is wholeness. But a serpent On the path between the two gates.
From Old And Young Manuscripts
And it will be at the end of days, And thus it will happen: the son of man Will bring to his hungry mouth Neither bread nor meat,
A letter arrived from the town of my birth from one still sustained by the grace of her youth. Enclosed between torment and fondness she pressed a blade of grass from Ponar.
At The Bonfire
In the forest, night stokes up a fire. Youthful trees grow ashen gray in fear. Among crackling branches, climbing higher, Shadows fall where axes sharp appear.
Comments about Abraham Sutzkever
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Edgar Allan Poe
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Did you ever see in fields of snow
Frozen Jews, in row upon row?
Breathless they lie, marbled and blue.
Of death in their bodies, no hint and no clue.
Somewhere their spirit is frozen and saved
Like a golden fish in a frozen wave.
Not speaking. Not silent. Just thinking bright.
The sun too lies frozen in snow at night.
On a rosy lip, in the freeze, still glows
A smile — will not move, not budge since it froze.
Near his mother, a baby starving, at rest.
How strange: she cannot give him her breast.
The fist of a naked old man in ...