Creative Writing Through Corona

I have been teaching Creative Writing, in both English and Hebrew, for more than thirty years. I’ve taught children as young as nine and adults up to the age of 95. i have published many of the student work in booklets and some of the students have had their works featured in regional student books of creative writing. Some of the youngsters and adults went on to become published poets or authors. Jewish Action featured some of my students in an article called “The Women Writers of Gush Katif,” in the summer of 2005. For eight years I taught in the senior center of Gush Etzion, and we published a book of their work called, The Golden Pens of Gush Etzion.

While most of Israel (and much of the world) is in some level of quarantine, I created Facebook postings called, “Creative Writing through Corona” with a new exercise almost every day.

Here are just a few fruits of the labor of some of our writers, and also some writers from the “Morningcoffeehaiku” Facebook group created by Batya Spiegelman Medad. I had explained that, contrary to common wisdom, haikus do not have to be 5-7-5 syllables.

Elisheva Horowitz, Maale Adumim
Hope and Lament (Yom Hashoah 5780/ 2020)
Despite the Virus
We see here in Israel
Much reason for hope

What will today bring
Rising to the occasion
Grateful for each breath

It’s newborn fig leaves
and the color of purple
that bring hope today

Miriam Kates Lock, Efrat
I think spring is almost here
Birds are flying home
Breeze on their wings, no virus

Ariella McCauley Kopels, Kibbutz Maale Gilboa
It’s okay to feel sad.
I feel sad too.
It means we share the same heart.

Linda Nussbaum, Brookline, Mass.
One transmitted germ
In weeks can infect millions.
So can our mitzvos.
Toddlers home all day
Stocks of toilet paper; would
Anything go wrong?
Finding time to learn
Has often been my challenge
Now it’s happening.

Sharon Katz, Efrat
Sabba and Savta all alone
Thinking of their family every moment always
Longing to be reunited. Kisses.

Cindy Schwartz Kline, Beit Shemesh
World has gone crazy.
Is it justifiable?
Best to be careful.

Esther Lixenberg Bloch, Elazar, Gush Etzion
Lockdown housebound time to think
Sew or paint grey skies
Knowing sun will shine again

Jessica Weinberger, Efrat
Community is
One “Shekedia ” tree we
View from our kitchen;
Instead of seeing
Darling “nechadim.” We see
Nuts from tree blossoms.
(Shekedia – almond; nechadim – grandchildren)

Batya Spiegelman Medad, Shilo
Locked down Passover
Warm spring weather escaping
Enjoying coffee

Shannon Nuszen, Elazar, Gush Etzion
Shopping in a store.
It’s never been so intense.
Bathing in soap now.

Toby Klein Greenwald, Efrat
All is in bloom now
I seek quiet in the hills
Looking inward.

The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.