This piece is part of an ongo­ing series that we are shar­ing from Israeli authors and authors in Israel.

It is crit­i­cal to under­stand his­to­ry not just through the books that will be writ­ten lat­er, but also through the first-hand tes­ti­monies and real-time account­ing of events as they occur. At Jew­ish Book Coun­cil, we under­stand the val­ue of these writ­ten tes­ti­mo­ni­als and of shar­ing these indi­vid­ual expe­ri­ences. It’s more impor­tant now than ever to give space to these voic­es and narratives.

In col­lab­o­ra­tion with the Jew­ish Book Coun­cil, JBI is record­ing writ­ers’ first-hand accounts, as shared with and pub­lished by JBC, to increase the acces­si­bil­i­ty of these accounts for indi­vid­u­als who are blind, have low vision or are print disabled. 

Sewing Machine 

When my broth­er was killed

All the threads frayed on Hanas­si Street in Ashkelon

Dad want­ed to appease Mom

So he bought her a sewing machine

Brand new from HaAliyah Street 

In Tel Aviv

We all went, Mom, me and Dad

Every week to learn

How to reat­tach the threads

Dad was happy

That Mom found some inter­est in life

So he bought her

Threads in all colors

We moved everything 

To Neta­nia

Which didn’t do much good for Dad

Mom didn’t use the new sewing machine

The threads frayed

A Sweater

My moth­er knit­ted a sweater for my brother

Knit­ting notebook

in sam­ples of brown woolen threads

My moth­er knit­ted for my beloved brother

Won­der­ful sweater

criss Cross 

to attach his body

To a warm cloth

My moth­er knit­ted a sweater for my brother

Beau­ti­ful like my brother

The sweater was left at home

And my broth­er was left in the hills

In the heat of the desert

with­out a home

wan­der­ing in his long­ing for us


I’ve cleaned the house

with the tears of the kidnappees

I’ve cleaned my house

After a month of mourning

And they are still there

In addi­tion to a thou­sand dead martyrs 

And the list is still going

And the hand is still writing

Who is for mer­cy and who is for grace

Who to die and who to burn

Who will die and who will live in suffering

I still have a home

In a beau­ti­ful street

and they…

I don’t know where they are

For the First time in my life

I am crying

and the tears are not running

it’s invis­i­ble

I can say that my soul was kidnapped

The views and opin­ions expressed above are those of the author, based on their obser­va­tions and experiences.

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