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Voices of the Divine Feminine: A Poetry Reading with Joy Ladin & Hila Ratzabi
September 8 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm EDTFree
Hosted by Rabbi Deborah Waxman
Join us in celebrating the launch of two visionary new books of poetry. Shekhinah Speaks, by Joy Ladin, gives voices to the Divine Feminine by remixing language from the Book of Isaiah and Cosmopolitan magazine. There Are Still Woods, by Hila Ratzabi, is an urgent, prayerful book of poems responding to the climate crisis, and includes the voices of spirits, gods, and goddesses from a variety of sources. The poets will each read from their books and engage in a discussion with Rabbi Deborah Waxman on the creative process of tapping into the Divine Feminine to express the inexpressible. Audience Q&A will follow.
Joy Ladin has published ten books of poetry, including her new collection, Shekhinah Speaks (Selva Oscura Press); The Book of Anna, winner of the National Jewish Book Award; and Transmigration, a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award. She is also the author of a memoir of gender transition, Through the Door of Life, which was a finalist for the National Jewish Book Award, and The Soul of the Stranger: Reading God and Torah from a Transgender Perspective, a finalist for the Lambda Literary Awards and the Triangle Award. Ladin has received fellowships and scholarships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Fulbright Foundation, and the American Council of Learned Societies Research, among other honors. A nationally recognized speaker on transgender issues, she convenes an online conversation series, “Containing Multitudes,” which is available at JewishLive.org/multitudes. Her writing is available at joyladin.wordpress.com.
Hila Ratzabi is the author of the poetry collection There Are Still Woods, forthcoming in September 2022 from June Road Press. She holds a BA in English/Creative Writing from Barnard College, a BA in Jewish Philosophy from the Jewish Theological Seminary (Double Degree Program, 2003), and an MFA in Poetry from Sarah Lawrence College (2007). Her poetry is published in a variety of literary journals and in The Bloomsbury Anthology of Contemporary Jewish American Poetry and Ghost Fishing: An Eco-Justice Poetry Anthology. Her articles have appeared in publications including The Wisdom Daily, MyJewishLearning.com, the Jewish Daily Forward, Kveller, Alma, and Zeek. Ratzabi is Director of Virtual Content & Programs at Ritualwell.org and lives in Oak Park, Il., outside Chicago, with her spouse and two children.
Rabbi Deborah Waxman, Ph.D., president and CEO of Reconstructing Judaism, is the first woman rabbi to head a Jewish congregational union and seminary. She has drawn on her training as a rabbi and historian to be the Reconstructionist movement’s leading voice in the public square. Her writing has appeared in the Forward, The Times of Israel, The Philadelphia Inquirer, HuffPost, Jewish Telegraphic Agency, and other news and academic outlets. Rabbi Waxman was named an LGBT History Icon in 2020. She projects a vision of Judaism that embraces all people and inspires Jews to be strong allies to the most vulnerable among us.
The session will be recorded and sent to participants. We encourage live attendance for you to get the most out of the experience.