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Chasidic poet blends sacred, mundane in acclaimed debut


URL: http://www.jewishjournal.com/twelve_twelve/article/chasidic_poet_blends_sacred_mundane_in_acclaimed_debut_20110510

Surely the most unusual title among the finalists in the poetry category of the Los Angeles Times Book Prizes is “God’s Optimism” by Yehoshua November (Main Street Rag, $14). After all, the rarefied world of poetry rarely encounters a Chasidic poet who declares that his intention is “to restore the sanctity to language.” And in case the book won first prize, I was asked to be ready to read the author’s acceptance speech, because the prize ceremony took place on a Friday night, and he is shomer Shabbat.

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