Remembering Samuel Menashe

The Jewish poet Samuel Menashe passed away on August 22; the New York native’s work, though beloved by fellow poets, did not receive widespread attention until he received the Poetry Foundation’s inaugural “Neglected Masters Award” in 2004. One of Menashe’s poems appeared in the September/October 2009 issue of Moment and appears below:

Adam means Earth*

I am the man
Whose name is mud
But what’s in a name
to shame one who knows
Mud does not stain
Clay he’s made of
Dust Adam became—
The dust he was—
Was he his name?

*Adam from adamah, “earth” in Hebrew.


 

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