The Voices Israel Group of Poets

in English

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 150 poets in Israel and several other countries.  We are a fully-accredited and approved organization registered since 1993 with the Israel Organizations Authority.  

For fuller information: 

The Early Bird period for paying membership dues is still with us! -- join or renew your membership before March 31st and get the discounted rate.   To join, just fill in our membership form and send it by mail with a cheque, or by email with details of your bank transfer or Paypal payment, to our Treasurer, Chanita Millman. (We do prefer payment by bank transfer, or by PayPal from the Join Voices page; but you may still send a cheque instead, as in the past). Full details, and the form to fill in if you're joining or need to change contact details, are on our Join Voices page.  To simply renew your yearly membership, you don't need to fill in the membership form but if you pay by bank transfer, or via a PayPal account that isn't in your own name, do please email Chanita telling her who has made the transfer.

Our modest annual membership dues cover our costs and entitle you to a free copy of the Anthology and reduced fees for workshops.  

For our members and followers outside Israel, PayPal is the easiest method! Unlike paying by check, you can complete the transaction from the comfort of your home; unlike paying by bank transfer, PayPal does not charge you for the service. 

Chapbooks currently available can be ordered via PayPal: click the link below, it will ask you to log in to your PayPal account and then fill in the amount to send Voices Israel and a note saying what the payment is for. Please also send an email to whoever is distributing them (currently, our President Judy Koren:

The link:

Come Join Us!

We're always happy to welcome both new and established (yes and would-be) poets into our family!

What We've Been Doing (activities over the past year)

Post-Covid (we hope!) some of our groups have returned to face-to-face meetings, while some have decided to continue holding meetings via Zoom. Details are in the Newsletter sent to all our members. For members with no convenient local group, we also have a Global Group which includes members from both Israel and abroad: again, see the Our Team page for contact details of its coordinator.

Would-be members who'd like to join  a meeting: please see the Our Team page for how to get in touch with your local group coordinator.  You're free to ask to attend, as a guest, any of our local meetings, via Zoom or in-person, for two or at most three meetings prior to deciding whether to join. 

January to March 2023

Our 2023 Voices Israel Anthology is still open for submissions, from members and non-members alike, through March 14th.  To submit up to three unpublished poems, click the Submittable button at the end of our Submitting To The Anthology page. Do remember to read and follow the guidelines!

The names of the winners and Honourable Mention recipients of the 33rd international Reuben Rose Competition (2022), and  the texts of their winning poems, are now on this website on the Winning Poems 2022 page.  

Our 4th Bar Sagi Young Poets' Prize is now closed for submissions.  We expect to announce the winners in mid-March. Meanwhile we've fixed the date of the joint awards event for both the Bar Sagi prize and the 33rd Reuben Rose Competition. It will be held on Sunday April 30th, 2023 at 7 pm Israel time, by Zoom. Please register with our secretary Pesach to get a link to the Zoom meeting.  Full details are in the March newsletter.

We're holding our 2023 Annual General Meeting on March 20th, in Tel Aviv. Notices have been sent to all our members and we hope to see as many as possible there. Please register with our secretary Pesach to attend. Full details are, again, in the March newsletter.

Following their highly successful first Poetry Night in Tzfat, and thanks to popular demand — our Upper Galilee group have done it again! Open-Mic Poetry Night II was held on Tuesday, February 7,  at the Edyth Geiger English Library, Jerusalem St. 38, Tzfat (Safed). 

In January we produced and printed the chapbook from the Haifa workshop held in late November 2022. It has been sent to everyone who ordered it. There are still a few copies left at the nominal price of 20 NIS (plus 5 NIS mailing costs if mailed to you). If anyone would like one, please contact Judy Koren at  Payment can be made via the link above, via PayBox (contact Judy for details) or via cheque mailed to our Treasurer Chanita.

October to December 2022:

The submission period for the 2023 Voices Israel Anthology opened on December 15th. Go to the Submitting To The Anthology page for the Submittable button enabling you to submit your 3 best unpublished poems for inclusion.

We held a very successful workshop in Haifa on November 24th.  Details are on the web page for the workshop.  

Our Bar Sagi Young Poets Prize, a competition for school students aged 12 to 19 at the time the poem was written, opened for submissions on November 15th. For full details see the Bar Sagi Prize general information page, and the Rules and Guidelines of the competition.

Our Anthology launch event took place on October 25th: most of our members voted to hold it via Zoom. We had 41 people, mostly members, including from the USA, Canada and even Ireland, with a few guests. Thirty-four of us read poems or had a proxy reader.  You can read the full account, with a few screenshots of the event and readers, on our 2022 Anthology Launch page.

The submission period for the Reuben Rose Competition closed in mid-October and our judges are now busy considering the last of the poems submitted and making their final decisions. Our administrator Mark Levinson will announce the results, hopefully in the first half of December. Stay tuned!

July to September 2022:

We're planning for the next Bar Sagi Competition.  Experience shows that we need to publicize it by personal contact - if you know any English teachers (your children's or grandchildren's, friends, family, former colleagues...) please spread the word to them!  Our announcement and the guidelines can be downloaded from this website and I’ll be happy to email them to anyone who requests (to

Our Anthology was sent out in mid-August. Israeli members who have not yet received it: please contact our President, Judy Koren, at, or Chanita at  Non-members may purchase copies, and members may buy additional copies, via the Buying the Anthology page of this website.  Congratulations to all the members of our team who made the speedy publication possible even though the submission period closed this year a month later than usual!

The 2022 Reuben Rose Competition opened for submissions in mid-July, and will remain open until mid-October. For the entry rules and a button to submit poems via Submittable, please see the Competition page of this website.

We are looking for a new Publicity Officer. For details please contact our President, Judy Koren.

The chapbook from the Netanya Residential Workshop has been printed and distributed to everyone who ordered a copy. We still have a few copies left: members who would like to buy one,  please contact our President Judy Koren at

April to June 2022

We announce with great delight that the renowned American-Jewish poet, Yehoshua November, has agreed to be our International Judge for the upcoming (33rd) Reuben Rose competition.

We held a very successful and enjoyable two-day Netanya Residential Workshop on Wednesday-Thursday, May 25th - 26th. Twenty-three Voices members and guests met for three workshops and a panel, to great joy after having to cancel the previous one in 2020 because of Covid. A full description is on our 2022 Netanya Workshop page.

We held the joint Bar Sagi Prize and Reuben Rose Competition awards events on April 26th, 2022. To enable the overseas winners to participate, it was held via Zoom. It was followed as usual by an Open Mic. To see the report on these two very enjoyable events, visit our 3rd Bar Sagi Awards Event and our 2021 Reuben Rose Competition Prizegiving pages respectively.

Congratulations to the three prize winners of the 3rd Bar Sagi Young Poets Prize competition:  Hila ("Sapir") Frumkin (First Prize and also an Honorary Mention), Eliav Huppert (Second Prize) and Amiad Dror Golan (Third Prize).

January to March 2022

Our 2022 Annual General Meeting took place on  Tuesday March 29th, in Tel Aviv - face to face at last! Despite the still- uncertain Covid situation, 13 people managed to attend. As usual it was followed by an Open Mic. 

At the AGM we said a fond farewell to our secretary Linda Suchy, who stepped down after a five-year term, and welcomed our new secretary, Pesach Rotem. Pesach has taken over the email address of We all look forward to working with him. 

Our February Zoom mini-workshop: "Seeing is Believing,"  another in a series on Harnessing the Senses for Creative Inspiration, given by Elana Dorfman, was fully booked and took place to rave reviews. We have prepared an e-chapbook of the poems produced at or as a result of the workshop, and have distributed it to participants. If any other Voices members would like a copy, please email our President, Judy Koren, at

What our Members Have Been Doing over the past year

March 2023: Congratulations to:

Helen Bar-Lev, whose new poetry book Late Life Love was featured on the World Poetry Café radio show. The entire show is recorded at

Isaac Cohen, who recited his poem “Ode to My Indian Friends” in the film “India” made for Poets Without Borders for the Versopolis Poetry Expo 23. Isaac appears on the video at 12:45.

Susan Olsburgh, whose twelve years as facilitator of the Netanya AACI Poetry Please program was celebrated in a laudatory two-page article, reproduced in our March 2023 Newsletter.

February 2023: Congratulations to:

Helen Bar-Lev, whose story “Bryant Avenue” was published in ESRA Magazine at

Wendy Blumfield, whose essay “Don't Throw Me Under the Bus” was published in ESRA Magazine at

Isaac Cohen, who was awarded a World Literary Prize named after Rahim Karim (Karimov) by the Rahim Karim World Literature Foundation, and who had a poem published in World Contemporary Poets, Vol. 1 (

Ira Director, who had eleven poems published in 2022: – three poems in Mediterranean Poetry: – six poems in The BeZine: – one poem in Paddler Press: – and one poem, “Food Court,” in the 2022 Voices Israel Anthology.

Pesach Rotem, whose poem “The Putz Who Saved American Democracy” was published in Mobius: The Journal of Social Change at

January 2023: Congratulations to:

Ada Aharoni, who was awarded the Golden Crown of World Poets Award (

Helen Bar-Lev, whose book Late Life Love (see December 2022 Newsletter, p. 6) is now available on Amazon at

Chaim Bezalel and Yonnah Ben Levy, whose book The Whole Megilla: The Book of Esther in Verse, written by Chaim and illustrated by Yonnah, will be published by Dekel Press in January. Catch a preview at

Isaac Cohen, who was the guest for a one-hour conversation and reading on Poets of the East at

Ruth Fogelman, whose poem “Hanuka Lights” has been published on the website of The Deronda Review at

Ricky Rapoport Friesem, whose children’s picture book in rhyme has been translated into Hebrew by Hanna Kahane and published as רובי עושה בלגן by Niv Publishers. The digital and hard-copy versions of the book are available at

Paul Rabinowitz, whose poem “Vacations” was published in Evening Street Review at

Willa Schneberg, whose collection of poems centered on psychotherapy, The Naked Room, will be published by Broadstone Books on January 15. It can be pre-ordered at

December 2022: Congratulations to:

Helen Bar-Lev; who has been awarded a Best International Poetry Award by the Italian cultural association Mondo Fluttuante; whose poem “The Man on the Train” was published in the anthology 101 Jewish Poems for the Third Millenium,; and whose chapbook of poetry and artwork, Late Life Love, has been published by New Feral Press, NY.

Eli Ben-Joseph, whose poem “Salamander Lamp” and whose artwork, which it describes and comments on, have been accepted for the ekphrastic exhibition planned for the spring on Kibbutz Gezer.

Isaac Cohen, who was the subject of the article “Poetic Labyrinth of Isaac Cohen” in Humanity Magazine; and has had a poem published in the 22rd edition of the "Garavi Sokak 2022" of the Literary Club "Miroslav Mika Antić."

Judy Koren, who has had a collection of five poems published in the webzine Mediterranean Poetry,

Miriam Webber, who under her pen name Rumi Morkin regularly has poems, long and short, accepted for publishing in the quarterly digital webzine Lighten Up Online.

November 2022: Congratulations to:

Wendy Blumfield, whose poem “Yearning” was published in The Jerusalem Report.

Isaac Cohen, whose poem “To My Mother Mazal Cohen, Blessed Memory 1936-2010” was published in MA: An Anthology of Poems in Memory of Bengali Poet Kazi Masuda Saleh

Judy Koren whose poem "Tel Shikmona" tied for 9th place (out of over 1,300 poems) in the Poetry Super Highway contest.

October 2022: Congratulations to:

Helen Bar-Lev, who won First Prize in the IFLAC World Peace Poetry Contest, and Larry Lefkowitz, who was selected as a finalist in the competition.

Isaac Cohen, who was the subject of the article “Poetic Labyrinth of Isaac Cohen” by Ana Stjelja in Lamed-E at (p. 20).

Iris Dan, whose poem “Solomon Schechter at the Cairo Geniza” has been accepted for publication by Poetica Magazine.

Paul Rabinowitz, whose prose poem “In the Original Language” was published in The Zodiac Review at; whose story “Diamond Life Master” was published in La Piccioletta Barca at; and whose manuscript of poems and short stories called truth, love and the lines in between has been accepted for publication by Finishing Line Press. Many of the poems in the book were workshopped with the Tel Aviv chapter of Voices Israel.

Patti Tana, whose new digital book of poems, Bumper Crop, which includes photographs by her husband John Renner, is now posted for viewing on his website:

September 2022: Congratulations to:

Helen Bar-Lev, who was the subject of a three-page profile in the Jerusalem Post, in print and online at

Pesach Rotem, whose poem “Souvenirs” was published in The Ekphrastic Review at

August 2022: Congratulations to:

Ann Bar-Dov, whose essay “Library Memories” won First Place in the 2021 Brooklyn Non-Fiction Prize Competition. Ann read from her essay on July 24th, 2022, along with eleven other participants in the competition. 

Helen Bar-Lev, who had two stories — “Bell Telephone vs. The Spielvogels” and “An Incident in Lifta” — published in the July issue of ESRA Magazine, and who had her poem “Tiberias” and her painting “Tiberias at night” included in the “Lights for the City” project under the auspices of Arte Città Amica and Immagine & Poesia.  

Isaac Cohen, whose poem “The Path of Love” was selected for publication in the Touch of Japan anthology and on the Eastern Pearl website.

Ricky Rapoport Friesem, who read and discussed her poetry as an honored guest in the Limmud Ottawa “Northern Poetry” series hosted by Seymour Mayne. The entire event is at

Judy Koren, whose poem “Remember His Name?” was chosen as a Featured Poem for the August issue of Better Than Starbucks and is being published in the print and e-book versions of that magazine as well as in the online version.

Susan Olsburgh, whose poem “Triangle of Hope” is being used promotionally on Hadassah Hospital's UK support site on Facebook.


Paul Rabinowitz, whose short story “On the Eighth Day” appears in the summer edition of October Hill Magazine

July 2022: Congratulations to:

Helen Bar-Lev, whose poems “The Second Amendment” and “The Wrong Tree” were read on the World Poetry radio station in Vancouver by Ariadne Sawyer on June 6.

Judy Koren, whose poem “The Human Reflex” has been published in Lighten Up Online.

Paul Rabinowitz, whose poem “Indigo and Half Moon” has appeared in The Writing Disorder, and whose poem “Citrus Honey Cake” has appeared in Evening Street Review.

Yiskah Rosenfeld, whose poem “A Study of Mice on Restricted Calorie Diets” was published in the Dating issue of Beyond Words.

Miriam Webber (aka Rumi Morkin), who has had three poems printed in the June issue of Lighten Up Online: “The FINDIT App” here; “R.I.P.” here and “Fantasia on Green Ideas” here.

June 2022: Congratulations to:

Helen Bar-Lev, whose poem “It’s Raining” was published in Love the Words, an annual anthology in tribute to Dylan Thomas. The entire anthology can be downloaded for free at

Isaac Cohen, who has had six poems published in The Rising Stars Anthology (, and whose poem “The Perfume of Love” has been published in English and in Chinese translation in the Spring edition of Poetry Collection.

Judith R. Robinson, whose book Buy a Ticket: New and Selected Poems received a rave review (“a brilliant heartbreaking tapestry”) in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Pesach Rotem, whose poem “Ripple” was published in the International Poetry section of Better Than Starbucks, and whose poem “Who Put the Ax in Al Aqsa?” was published in Topical Poetry.

May 2022: Congratulations to:

Helen Bar-Lev, whose poem “It’s Raining” was published in Love the Words, an annual anthology in tribute to Dylan
Thomas. The entire anthology can be downloaded for free at

Isaac Cohen, who had six poems published in The Rising Stars Anthology (, and
who also had his poem “The Perfume of Love” published in English and in Chinese translation in the Spring edition of Poetry

Judith R. Robinson, whose book Buy a Ticket: New and Selected Poems received a rave review (“a brilliant
heartbreaking tapestry”) in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette at

Pesach Rotem, whose poem “Ripple” was published in Better Than Starbucks at
, and whose poem “Who Put the Ax in Al Aqsa?”
was published in Topical Poetry at

April 2022: Congratulations to:

Iris Dan, whose poem “The Last Judgment” was published in Red Fern Review at

Susan Olsburgh, whose poem “Ilse’s Reply” was published in Poetry Superhighway’s Yom HaShoah Poetry Issue at

Pesach Rotem, whose poem “Banning Books” was published in Visible Magazine at

Judith R. Robinson, whose book Buy a Ticket: New and Selected Poems has been published by Word Poetry

( Judy will be reading at the Greater Pittsburgh Festival of Books on May 14 (

Isaac Cohen, who had a poem published in La Fenêtre de Paris, Vol-II: An Anthology of Poets from Different Countries on La France (