[Mendele] Mendele Vol. 21.002

Victor Bers victor.bers at yale.edu
Sun Jul 17 21:52:14 EDT 2011

Mendele: Yiddish literature and language

Contents of Vol. 21.002
July 12, 2010

1) heirs of Yiddish poets sought (Michal Arieli)
2) "halb yokish, halb fayvish" (Beyrl Kabak)
3) shitere finger (Khane-Faygl Turtletaub)
4) shitere finger (Zulema Seligsohn)
5) "Shver tsu zayn a yid" (Hershl Hartman)
6) "Shver tsu zayn a yid" (Hershl Hartman)
7) Abbreviation giml''pey (Lena Watson)

Subject: heirs of Yiddish poets sought
Date: June 30

I've been working on an anthology of Kinderlider, Yiddish poems for 
children translated for the first time into Hebrew. Among the poets, there 
are some whose heirs I could not find in order to ask their permission to 
publish the poems. Therefore, I would like to ask whether someone in the 
Mendele discussion group knows any of the poets who lived in USA and died 

*Leyb Berkovich* (1897-1957) Children's poet, as well as his wife,
  *Lea Kapilowitz Hofman* (d. 1952).
*Shmuel Yokir Londinsky* (1889-1956). He wrote the famous song "Gegangen 
iz a yingele" and *Abraham Reisen *(d. 1953)

If you know something about their children or where I could find such 
information, I'd be happy to hear about it.

Many thanks,
Michal Arieli

Date: June 19
Subject: "halb yokish, halb fayvish"

shalom aleykhem.

efsher kent ir mir derklern dem taytsh fun "halb yokish, halb fayvish." 
Fun vanen kumt es?

a sheynem dank
Beryl Kabak
Date: 20 June
Subject: shitere finger

The person who possess "shitere finger" is someone who cannot save or hold 
on to money, a spendthrift.  The money runs right through his/her fingers.

Khane-Faygl Turtletaub

Date: June 19
Subject: shitere finger

In reply to Jane Peppler's question, it means exactly that the person's 
money runs through his fingers.  No sense of being a crook is attached to 
the idiom.

Zulema Seligsohn
Date: 20 June
Subject: "Shver tsu zayn a yid"

I am forwarding the following inquiry in hopes that Mendelyaner may be of 
help. Sholem Aleykhem's play was also known as "Der blutiker  shpas" and 
was last performed in the U.S., I believe, by the Yiddish Theater Ensemble 
in 1945-6 at New York's Barbizon Plaza (see Leksikon fun yidishn teyater, 
Vol. 6, cols. 5877-5879). (I had a non-speaking role, but that's a whole 
'nother story.)

Hershl Hartman

Here's the inquiry:

From: Jacky Altalef-Tenenbaum <jackytenenbaum at hotmail.com>
Date: June 18, 2011 4:16:50 PM EDT
Subject: It's hard to be a Jew script

Hello, my name is Jackeline Tenenbaum and I'm a teacher at the Jewish 
school in Guatemala City. I would love to do a theatrical adaptation of 
"It's hard to be a Jew" with my students but I have been unable to find 
the script. Can you advice me on where to find  it?
Hope to hear from you soon.
Thank you very much in advance.
Yours truly,
Date: June 22
Subject: "Shver tsu zayn a yid"

Since sending the following inquiry two days ago (6/20/2011), I've  been 
informed of a Folksbiene production in 1983 (NY Times review, 11/9/83:

The inquirer has been referred to the Folksbiene.

Interestingly, one of the members of the Yiddish Theater Ensemble, Jacob 
Gostinsky, with whom I performed as a callow youth, is also listed as an 
actor in the 1983 production.

Hershl Hartman
Date: June 20
Subject: Abbreviation giml''pey

I often translate hand-written Yiddish letters from private family 
archives and frequently come across the abbreviation giml''pey that 
usually follows any mention of family, particularly children. It's clearly 
a blessing, but does anyone know what these letters actually stand for? I 
assume it's something like "Got farhit," but this is nothing more than a 

Many thanks,
Lena Watson
End of Mendele Vol. 21.002

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