“Tirzah Goldenberg’s LIKE AN OLIVE opens a space for me interior to the word, moves by some expansive mobility anterior to the letter, at once unfurling and embroidering, at once a hermitage below image and a vessel whose play of absence carries, like an archeological fragment, the forms and questions of our inheritance. This k’zayis, like an olive, is a shiur I want to show up for again and again, a book which presses with sensitive longing the pressing particulars of a present. How to live, where to live, how to be with others, how in a fractured overlapping and doubling of diasporas might we construct our communities and futures? Offered is a rhyme between ancient and contemporary, between personal and mystical, possible because of what’s allowed in the word as Goldenberg writes: a past and present embellishing the measure of themselves in a pun far deeper and larger than wit. —Lewis Freedman
Poetry. Jewish Studies.
Tirzah Goldenberg was raised among sycamore trees and rabbinic laws in Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania. She is the author of two books with Verge, LIKE AN OLIVE (2022) and ALEPH (2017), which consists of poetry partially written from fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls. And she is co-author (with Norman Finkelstein) of THIRTY-SIX/TWO LIVES: A POETIC DIALOGUE (Dos Madres, 2021). She lives on the Olympic Peninsula with her husband Rico Moore and their cat Fennel.