The Shine Journal

Exceptional Flash, Poetry, Art and Photography!

Three From Karen Joy Greenberg


Hidden Tzaddik



Short, wrinkled grandfather,
Creased, dotted hand,
Waylays my Tehillim moment;
“Pray for my sister,
She wears a gun.

“Her son bakes tourist-approved pita.
Where fiery play’s
Sometimes applauded by purchase;
A town or a flag feeds my family.
It’s really okay; others’ begging
Pictures with a “real Jew.”

Today our Mother Rachel cries from foreign
Tears, while wiping burned faces.
Soon reservists’ silver trumpets will herald
More than the Beit HaMikdash,
Making our entreaties moot.

American Special: Acculturating to the Holiest City


Moscow, Paris, and Fairlawn, New Jersey spill;
Their olim fill this city.
Birthright buses discharge children
Among neighborhood “black hats.”
By Kyrat Moshe, moms buy up
Supper-time schnitzel.
It’s no wonder the cosmos needs
Ben David to succeed ben Yehuda.

Har Nof seminary girls, rich in credit cards,
Giggle yards of English.
Where French in Pisgat Zeev bark imperatives,
Harking to Persian roots.
Romemia teaches past Rav Cook,
Reaching uninformed souls preparing
For marriage, at the windmill, then the wall, I cry.
Hashem’s hand, ear, and eye, clutch all.

Talpiot driving instructors cackling Hebrew Arabic,
Survive by training truckers to pass
Near the Knesset’s jaw, where doves yield to cement lions.
Laws reflect banked shekels as well (as) outside interests
A small child waiting for a hasaha gets stoned by mistake.
Her small body’s stolen from a morgue, while
This morning’s sky rolls over Jerusalem.
Beneath colored streaks, The Great Entrepreneur Charges “American Prices.”


Their Somewhat Raucous Celebrations


Her children no longer jumped leaf piles;
Their somewhat raucous celebrations came to consist
Of minimalizations and other neighborly denial
Placed like stinking sand, absolute except for daily complaints.

Not a perfect life, theirs was filled with everything,
From banal accounts for “understandable” actions
To verbal tripe freshly spiced with tweets and texting;
The most graphic exposes were left for foreign delivery.

Buoyed by unnatural substances, I volleyed their nastiness.




Hidden Tzaddik: I was thinking about how people cope with chronic international difficulties.

American Special: Acculturating to the Holiest City: I was reflecting on how individuals acculturate to a foreign society.

Their Somewhat Raucous Celebrations: I was remembering the nature of people in a foreign culture.

Bio: KJ Hannah Greenberg is most happy when her children correctly sort the laundry or when her hedgies wipe all the marshmallow fluff off their feet. Her work can be found in print and on line in European, in North American, in Middle Eastern, in Oceanic, and in Asian venues and under select budgie cages. Hannah can be found at a local, women's gym, doing bench presses, or at her keyboard, matchmaking words like “twaddle” and “xylophone.”

Click the pics to meet the members!


Editor: Pamela Tyree Griffin

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