Who We Are
Voices Israel is the natural home for Israeli poets writing in English, and for those abroad who support our goals and share our enthusiasm for poetry. From our initial launch by four founders in 1971, we have grown to a membership of around 160 poets in Israel and many other countries. We are a fully-accredited and approved organization registered since 1993 with the Israel Organizations Authority.
For fuller information:
What We're Doing
The winners of the 2019 Reuben Rose competition have just been announced. Congratulations to the three prize-winners and ten Honorable Mentions! To see who they are, visit the 2019 Competition page. We'll have the full texts of their poems on the website as soon as possible. The presentations ceremony will be in May.
The 2020 Anthology is now open for submissions. The submission period runs from December 15, 2019 to March 15, 2020. Come on everyone and send in your best poems! Submissions are via the 2020 Anthology Submission page. Please read the Guidelines carefully because the procedure has been changed this year in order to enable as much as possible to be automated and done online. We're delighted to confirm that our skilled designer, Johnmichael Simon, has agreed to continue in that role this year too.
The Bar Sagi competition deadline has been extended until the end of February. The prize administrator Wendy Dickstein would appreciate efforts by our members to bring the prize to the attention of any Israeli secondary school teachers who members may know. For further information, see our Bar Sagi Prize page and/or contact email@example.com. Please everyone encourage your young relatives and their friends to enter poems!
We celebrated the launch of the 2019 Anthology on December 1st at the Karaoke Bar in Netanya. The fun evening included poetry readings by attendees whose poems were published in the Anthology, or proxy readers for some of those who can't attend. We also welcomed the new editorial team for the anthology: David Fellerman (Netanya-Sharon), Edit Gavriely (Haifa) and Yehudit Goldfarb (Tsafat), who will together choose the poems for the next two annual Anthologies, under the guidance of our Chief Editor, Dina Yehuda. See our 2019 Anthology Launch page for a fuller description of the event.
Our beautiful chapbook from the Haifa workshop in June is still available for purchase. As always, a wonderful production by Johnmichael Simon, including an “inspiring” book cover. Order forms were included in the October Newsletter sent out to our members.
The 30th International Reuben Rose Poetry competition submission period closed on October 3rd.
The judges are last year’s winner John Gallas, second prizewinner Donna Bechar and the overseas judge is Canadian poet Katherine Gordon.
Watch this space for news about the results of the competition!
We've updated the Compendia and Organizations section of our Resource List, adding especially U.K. sites of organizations that offer lists of competitions, magazines currently accepting submissions, tips for writers, etc. Worth checking out!
We held the presentations event of the 2018 Reuben Rose International Poetry Competition on May 16th, 2019 at Mercaz Avivim near Tel Aviv university. The first prize winner, John Gallas of the UK, didn't manage to get here, much to his and our regret; but sent us a lovely recording of himself reading his prize-winning poem, and an audio commentary on how the poem came to be written. Our two Israeli prize-winners and three Israeli "honourable mentions" read their poems themselves, while the poems of those who live abroad were beautifully read by Israeli proxy readers.
Here's a link to the full list of winners and Honorable Mentions; from that page you can read and download the texts of the poems (pdf file).
Here's a link to the page for the presentations evening, including John Gallas's recording of his poem and a few photos to give the feel of the evening. To see more photos from the event, visit our Facebook page !
At the same event, we launched a new Voices Israel initiative: the Bar Sagi Young Poets Prize endowed
in memory of a young Israeli poet, Bar Sagi. Bar was a talented young poet who sadly died
in 2017 in her sixteenth year. Her family is endowing a prize in her name and
family members attended the launch. We hope that this
prize will not only give solace but also promote poetry among young poets. We’re delighted that Voices Israel
is going to help encourage the voices of the young in Israel.
Dr. Judy Belsky, the co-ordinator of our Bet Shemesh group, helped organize a pre-Purim poetry reading entitled "The Spirit of Purim: Poetry and Music" at the Israel Center in Jerusalem. Five of our poets read their poems. To see a YouTube video of the event (1 hour 23 minutes) click here.
Our Annual General Meeting was held on Tuesday March 12th at 6 pm. Here's the agenda. It was a lively event with considerable discussion of resolutions. It was graciously hosted once again in central Tel Aviv by Birgit Talmon who organized a very appetising range of refreshments, and was attended by about 20 members. Ruth Fogelman was presented with a Steimatsky voucher to mark her completion of ten years as the Jerusalem chapter's coordinator. (Avril Meallem has succeeded Ruth - Welcome Avril!) After the formal business of the evening there was an Open Mike session - the attendees each read two of their poems and enjoyed the experience of listening to each other's work.
Voices and IAWE held a joint Poetry Reading in Tzfat — on January 24, at Mystic Mountain Studio and Brewery in the Artists' Quarter of Tzfat - see it on Google Maps. Featured poets: Reuven Goldfarb, Shlomo Sher, Michael Dickel (Dekel); invitees: Yehudit Goldfarb, Ann Bar-Dov, Pesach Rotem, and Michael Kagan. After the poetry readings the venue was opened to the public and a Hassidic-looking band played blues and jazz. For fuller information and a few photos to convey the atmosphere, see our Tzfat Poetry Event page. Thanks to Reuven Goldfarb for organizing this event!
What our Members Have Been Doing: congratulations to:
Eli Ben-Joseph on the birth of a grandson.
Rumi Morkin, whose poem “The spyder” (inspidered by William Blake) has been accepted by Narrow Road for the December 2019 issue. See https://issuu.com/narrowroad.mag/docs/narrow_road_dec_19
Richard Shavei-Tzion, who was chosen as Poetry Super Highway Poet of the Week for his poem “The last thing my father did for me”. See, http://poetrysuperhighway.com/psh/december-9-15-2019-poetry-from-richard-leach-and-richard-shavei-tzion/
Steven Sher, who has published a new book of poems (Nov. 2019) “Contestable Truths, Incontestable Lies” which chronicles his ‘immigrant reality’ in Jerusalem.
Matthew Anish, who has had two poems published in the December 2019 issue of Conceit magazine. One is "Dreaming an Electric Reality" and the other is "My Rock and Roll Friend."
Hannah Moshe, whose poem Hainault Forest has been published in Seventh Quarry (Wales) 2019, The haiku Petals of Awareness which she also wrote is also published there, but which wa unfortunately erroneously attributed to her mother (who is also a poet).
Susan Rosenberg, who has recently celebrated her 95th birthday! We wish you good health and happiness till 120, Susan!
Helen Bar-Lev and Katherine L. Gordon [this year’s Reuben Rose judge] whose poems were selected to celebrate the opening of the Official Peaceathon on the World Poetry Cafe.
Seymour Mayne, whose most recent book, Cusp: Word Sonnets, translated by Mikhail Rykov with an
introduction by Natalia Vesselova, was recently published in Saint Petersburg, in a bilingual Russian edition, and is for sale at bookstores in the Russian Federation.
Ezra Ben-Meir, whose poem Elections in Israel, was published in the November 22, 2019 issue of the Jerusalem Post Magazine.
Esther Cameron, whose sonnet sequence Junctures of Light, sonnets on the weekly Torah portion and the corresponding chapter of Tanya is being published week by week in Sasson Magazine.
Esther Schneur-Berlot, whose memoir chap book, Changing Conversations, will be published by Moonstone Press.
Matthew Anish (New York), who has had a poem published in the most recent issue of Conceit magazine, following one published in a recent issue of The Ultimate Writer and an article about Walt Whitman in the second August issue of Barrs News.
Helen Bar-Lev, whose exhibition of her paintings of Italy opened on October 12th.
Judy Belsky, whose artwork has been chosen for the Gold List in Art Market Magazine.
Michael Duke (London), who has just started a poetry group at his house: "Poetry Chez Michael". In addition, Michael is a distinguished photographer, one of whose images received a 'Salon Gold' at an international competition held in Serbia, while he also received an aFIAP distinction from the Federation Des Art Photographie based in France.
Pesach Rotem, whose poem “After the Holidays” was published in The Blue Nib at
https://thebluenib.com/article/pesach-rotem-after-the-holidays/, and whose poem “A Big Mistake” was published in Poets Reading the News at http://www.poetsreadingthenews.com/2019/09/mistake-rotem/.
Pesach Rotem, whose poem “The Adventures of Shrubbery Man” was published in Poets Reading the News at http://www.poetsreadingthenews.com/2019/07/the-adventures-of-shrubbery-man/.
Reuven Goldfarb, whose poem, "Visiting Empire Haven: A Naturist Resort in Moravia, New York," won Honorable Mention and $100 in this year's Winning Writers Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest. He was one of 15 finalists out of 5,541 who entered, each with a single poem. The names of the winners and their poems will be posted on the Winning Writers web site on August 15. In the meantime, here is the link to Reuven's winning entry: https://winningwriters.com/past-winning-entries/visiting-empirehaven.
Reuven Goldfarb again, who will begin in September to teach a class called "Formal Elements in
Poetry." The class will most likely meet on one or two Wednesdays a month
starting at 5 or 6 pm and last for a couple of hours. We'll post more details when we have them.
Matthew Anish, whose poem “Hope for Humanity” was published in the June 2019 issue of Conceit magazine, and also has two poems in the anthology Leisure, a collection of poetry from the poets of the Green Pavilion. This after we recently congratulated Matthew for having a poem published in the April 16 edition of The New York Times and three poems published in the May issue of Mystical Muse.
Stanley Barkan, Helen Bar-Lev, Lidia Chiarelli/Actis, and Bernard Mann whose poems have been published in the E-book of Universal Oneness Poetry Anthology, Magnum Opus.
Michael E. Stone, whose book Armenia Views has been published by Yerevan: Hayastan Press. The book is illustrated by Jerusalem artist, Nicole Levy. It is available from Michael at firstname.lastname@example.org for $6.50 (Voices and IAWE Members $5.50 or NIS 20).
Congratulations also to Michael wearing his other hat - as a Professor at the Department of Islamic and
Middle Eastern Studies, the Hebrew
University of Jerusalem - who on June 11, 2019, along with five of his colleagues, was chosen as a new member of The Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities. The official induction ceremony will take place at the Academy in Jerusalem during Chanukah 2019.
Mann, Stanley Barkan and Carolyn Kleefeld. The E-Book is available for free download from Immagine & Poesia and is readable online at ISSUU.
Avril Meallem (together with her poetry partner Shernaz Wadia in India) for having had published two Tapestry poems: Scarred for Life published in the special edition 'Women, Power & Creativity' in the March, 2019 issue of SETU: a Bilingual Journal of Literature, Arts and Culture (Pittsburgh, USA) and Homeland published in the April 2019 edition of “Narrow Road” a Triannual Indian Literary e-magazine.
Kaila Shabat, who has five poems published in Poesia Sin Fronteras III, 2018. Her poems have been translated from English to Hebrew and to Spanish.
Ruth Fogelman whose book, What Color are Your Dreams? was published by Of the Essence Press and is available in Israel directly from Ruth and outside Israel on Amazon.com. Thanks also to Ruth for so ably organizing the Jerusalem group each month for ten years! And to Avril Meallem who has taken over as coordinator of the Jerusalem group meetings.
Esther Schnur-Berlot - for gaining 3rd Honourable Mention ($75.00 prize) in Poetica Publishing Company's 2018 ADRP Award, for her poem "Arguing with the Deceased", and 4th Honourable Mention (also $75.00), for "Everything is Broken".
Helen Bar-Lev - currently a Finalist in the ADRP Award, for her poem "Who Knows?"
Yocheved Zemel whose entire poem "Desert and Rebirth" will be published on the Deronda Review homepage. (It was too long for the print edition.) Her poem "Reaching for the Heavens" will be published in the print edition. In addition, four of Yocheved’s poems will be published in IAWE's arc26 2019 edition: "The Attic", "Freedom", "Flight", and "Love in a War Zone".
The following poets – (in alphabetical order) : Hayim Abramson, Ada Aharoni, Ann Bar-Dov, Helen Bar-Lev, Dr. Judy Belsky, Chaim Bezalel, Lilian Cohen, Wendy Dickstein, Ira Director, Bob Findysz, Ricky Rapoport Friesem, Reuven Goldfarb, Miriam Green, Britta Kollberg, Mark L. Levinson, Celia Merlin, Helen Schary Motro, Pesach Rotem, Shlomo Sher, Johnmichael Simon, Yocheved Zemel, whose works were chosen by Editor Dr. Shawn Edrei for IAWE’s arc26. The launch was held on April 4, 2019, 18:30-21:30, at the Mazeh 9 Center, Tel Aviv.
Lidia Chiarelli of our Affiliate, Immagine & Poesia, whose book Sunset in Cup won First Prize at Premio Letterario Internazionale “Cinque Terre – Golfo dei Poeti" PORTOVENERE.
Matthew Anish who had two poems published in the recent anthology Leisure - which publishes poems of the Green Pavilion reading taking place the last Wednesday of each month.
Esther Cameron whose poem In the Inner Court: A Purim Monodrama was published in Sasson Magazine.
Rumi Morkin (aka Miriam Webber) whose poem "Smartphones" was published in Sasson Magazine, October 2018 (see https://sassonmag.com/smartphonesby-rumi-morkin/); and whose poem "Utopia" has been accepted for publishing in the Deronda Review of 2019.
Judy Koren whose poem "Utopias" has been accepted for publishing in the Deronda Review of 2019.
Ruth Fogelman who has had two poems published in the February issue of The Seventh Quarry.
Matthew Anish whose poem was published in the December/January issue of The Amulet. Matthew also has a chapbook, Golden Words, available for purchase at $7.00. You may reach him at email@example.com.
Come Join Us!
We're always happy to welcome new and established (yes and would-be) poets into our family!
- To attend a local meeting to try us out - contact your local Coordinator.
- To become a member of Voices Israel - fill in our membership application form and send it in - full details are in the form. Note that we charge a
modest annual membership fee, which covers our costs and entitles you to a free copy of the Anthology and reduced fees for workshops.