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Failures - Poem by gershon hepner

FAILURES


Failures breathe and vivify,
and data that are iffy vie,
with certainties competing with
midrashic power of the myth.

Inspired by reading a paper by Monica Osborne on midrashic readings of holocaust literature and by an article by Anthony Lane in the New Yorker, March 30,2009 reviewing a new edition of the letters of Samuel Beckett:

At the end of January,1958, the first American production of Samuel Beckett’s “Endgame” opened, at the Cherry Lane Theatre. The idea of Beckett playing on Commerce Street is rich in irony, and the director, Alan Schneider, and his cast would have been all too aware of the fate that had befallen “Waiting for Godot” when that play received its national première, two years earlier. Advertised, perhaps unwisely, as “the laugh sensation of two continents, ” “Godot” had opened at the Coconut Grove Playhouse, in Miami, and closed after two weeks, having led some viewers to inquire if one of the continents in question had been Antarctica. Beckett himself had been not just stoical but positively braced, as was made clear in a letter to Schneider: “Success and failure on the public level never mattered much to me, in fact I feel much more at home with the latter, having breathed deep of its vivifying air all my writing life up to the last couple of years.”

4/4/09


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Poems About Holocaust

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