This is a list Leviathan’s Winter 2011 staff. Read the rest of this entry »
Archive for the ‘Winter 2011 Issue’ Category
By Robbie Pleasant
I have writer’s block.
I know you can see that there are still plenty of things written in this article, and so you’re reading on in the knowledge that something has been said, but that’s in the future of my writing these words right now. At the moment, I’m looking at this blank page and wondering what I’m going to say to fill it.
Fortunately, that’s where my fellow writers here at Leviathan come in, for I may be the friendly neighborhood Jew, but I’m not the only one with random things on my mind. So at the suggestion of a fellow writer, let’s take a look at Jewish stereotypes popping up in characters who are probably not Jewish, and in fact aren’t even human. Read the rest of this entry »
By Nate Rogers
Let’s face it: rock and roll would be nowhere without the total abuse of relationship lyrics and the almighty I-IV-V chord progression. Grab a guitar, scribble something about a person you love (or hate), and grow your hair out. That’s rock and roll, kids. It’s not necessarily good, but it’s consistent. Really, it doesn’t seem all that difficult, does it? Of course, the missing ingredients for success are talent and ambition, but at a basic level it’s not all that complicated.
Take the band Smith Westerns, for example. Their second album, Dye It Blonde, features some of the most sophomoric (pun intended) lyrics about girls that I’ve ever heard. Just ridiculous, how could you possibly be comfortable singing lyrics like, “Love and lust, how come they are such a must?” Corny or not, this is what their music is filled with—and it’s fantastic. Read the rest of this entry »
By Zora Raskin
Nuclear proliferation has become so much a part of the constant buzz of the Washington hive that we have ceased to question
We are building and building and building to destruction
We have accepted the narrative that if we possess 500 times the power of the sun our enemies will crawl back into the holes from where they came from?
That their violence, fears our violence
Break that linear bullshit, everything is a circle. Read the rest of this entry »
By Alexandria Vickery
In Genesis 17:11, God commands Abraham: “You are to undergo circumcision, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and you.” Ritual circumcision symbolizes a commitment to the participation in and perpetuation of the Jewish faith. Jewish law states that Jewish-born males and uncircumcised male Jewish converts must undergo circumcision, or removal of the foreskin, in order to fulfill the contract necessary to be a Jew. Those who are circumcised are thought to have undergone a mitzvah aseh, or “positive commandment,” and have therefore created a personal connection to a divine source and the Jewish nation. On the eighth day after the birth of a Jewish male, he undergoes a Brit milah ceremony, or “covenant of circumcision,” presided over by a rabbi and performed by a mohel, a Jewish person specifically trained for the procedure. Read the rest of this entry »
By Nate Rogers
“Goddamit, Frank! Wake the fuck up!”
“I said, wake up and leave or I will make you leave.”
“Jeez, take it easy. I was having the most wonderful dream…”
“You say that every time this happens, Frank. You’re so wasted I wonder if you even have the capacity to dream anymore. Now get out.”
I stand up, trying my best to look as unsteady as possible. Yes, fall on the stool next to you, Frank. Put your coat on slowly. Don’t look Victor in the eye. You’re a good liar until you look somebody in the eye. Out you go, Frankie. Don’t look back.
“Wait, Frank! You have to pay your bill…” Victor’s voice trailed off. Almost as if he felt bad asking from an old friend. I capitalize on the hesitation.
“Oh, that’s ok, Victor. We can have lunch tomorrow!” Making the final movement out the door, I enter a slow trot to the right down Wilshire. I intended to run down 11th Street too, but I was winded. Now I understand why you’ll never see fat, old lions on nature shows. Or fat, old deer, for that matter. They shouldn’t survive. I shouldn’t have survived this long. The only animals in the wild that get fat and old are pigeons and rats—city scum. No wonder they like my house so much. Read the rest of this entry »
By Rachel Starr-Glass
Dry honey-earth cracks beneath my clover hoof,
Shades of sand on sand stretch;
Woven waves of sea.
The heat of day rises with the lazy sun,
Hauled up by copper chains, into the milk-blue sky.
Heat clouds the hills;
Blurs them before my square-pupiled eyes. Read the rest of this entry »
By Catie Damon
The couple leaned forward against the cold metal railing and smiled, lips cracked open from the salty air. Below them read, “Issaquah Ferry” in thick, forest green cursive letters. High-pitched notes pierced the wind above the engine’s drone and the girl turned around to find an old man sitting cross-legged, guitar in lap. A small white rabbit was perched atop his head, eyes tightly closed and ears swept back. Its neck was tucked into its body to bolster itself from the wind. In front of the pair, a guitar case lay open with a few crumpled bills scattered across maroon crushed velvet. The man’s smoker’s voice seeped through his yellowed teeth under a horsehair mustache. The girl watched the red, paunchy fingertips press deeply into the strings.
“Did you train him to stay with you?” The girl asked when the singing stopped.
“He likes it up there, it’s the warmest spot, where all the heat escapes. Didn’t have to do a thing, he found it himself.” Read the rest of this entry »
By Aaron White
I walked into mediocrity like a rich man his inheritance.
the awkward way I present myself manifests itself—in My words—
scribbled in notebooks, on napkins, and on walls
blown away by the words of others
the trappings of boozehounds who love boozehounds who love boozehounds .
I read a book that made Me stop two beers into a six pack
will My words ever bare that kind of meaning?
My awkwardness manifests itself.
Published on page 42 of the Winter 2011 issue of Leviathan.
By Ethan Tratner
For thousands of years, Jews have lived as a marginalized people exiled throughout the world. After massive immigrations to countries such as Israel and America and thousands of years living as a minority, the question emerged: what makes Jews unique and where do they belong? In America, many Jews acculturate into society, yet they manage to retain uniquely Jewish traditions. One such aspect of Jewish culture that sets Jews apart from their surrounding cultures is language. Jews have always used their own language, Hebrew, in religious ceremonies and texts. Within their communities, however, a variety of secular languages were spoken in everyday life. Many of these distinctly Jewish languages are in danger of extinction. It is imperative that Jews attempt to preserve their many languages because it adds vibrancy to our culture.
The ancient Jews spoke Hebrew. This is in the Semitic language group that includes Aramaic, Assyrian and Arabic. These languages originated and were spoken throughout the Middle East. The ancient Jews were subject to attack from various expanding empires fighting over the region. After the loss of the kingdoms of Judea and Israel the Jews were scattered across the Middle East, North Africa and Europe. With the loss of a singular homeland, the Jews integrated into these new empires. Although the Jews are now living in the Diaspora or exile, they have not dissolved into their new nations. Hebrew remained the Jewish language of prayer and new languages formed within the now dispersed Jewish communities. Read the rest of this entry »