fbpx

Poem: Jewish Holiday Tattoos

A poem by Susan Terris
[additional-authors]
November 24, 2015

The blue dove on my wrist — shadow of wing
with an olive branch floating above:

from the last night of Chanukah, when we used
Jewish Holiday Tattoos to mark each other with
flags of Israel, six-pointed stars, arks, torahs.
They were funny, we thought, as we sat down
to latkes and applesauce, to red cabbage and blintzes,
and by menorah light compared our wrists.
But, suddenly, gooseflesh. Jewish tattoos?
Sacrilege? Or a measure
of how far we’d come — able to live where
a tattoo was just an ornament,

one that would wash off, leaving only
a faint-green branch borne by a dove of hope.


Susan Terris is the author of “Ghost of Yesterday, New & Selected Poems” (Marsh Hawk Press, 2013). She’s also the editor of Spillway Magazine and a poetry editor for Pedestal

Did you enjoy this article?
You'll love our roundtable.

Editor's Picks

Latest Articles

Beauty Without Borders

I was amused by this scene of an elderly, ultra-Orthodox couple enjoying a coffee while a sensual French song came on. Do they have any idea what this song is about? I wondered.

More news and opinions than at a
Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.

More news and opinions than at a Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.

More news and opinions than at a Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.