Florence Weinberger was born in New York City, raised in the Bronx, educated at Hunter College, California State University, Northridge and UCLA. She is the author of five published collections of poetry, The Invisible Telling Its Shape (Fithian Press,1997), Breathing Like a Jew (Chicory Blue Press, 1997), Carnal Fragrance, (Red Hen Press, 2004), Sacred Graffiti, (Tebot Bach, 2010), and Ghost Tattoo (Tebot Bach, 2018.) Five times nominated for a Pushcart Prize, her poetry has appeared in a number of literary magazines, including The Comstock Review, Antietam Review, Jabberwock, The Literary Review, Solo, Rattle, River Styx, Pacific Review, Askew, California Quarterly, The Baltimore Review, Nimrod, Calyx, Manhattan Poetry Review, Poetry East, Miramar, Another Chicago Magazine, The Deronda Review, The Pedestal, The New Vilna Review and The Los Angeles Review. Poems have also been published in many anthologies, including Blood to Remember: American Poets on the Holocaust, Truth and Lies That Press For Life, Invocation LA, The New Los Angeles Poets, Ghosts of the Holocaust, Grand Passion, Images from the Holocaust, Claiming the Spirit Within, Wide Awake and The Widows' Handbook.
What the Survivors Said to Us
We went to greet them and we clutched them to us,
the sluggish tide of cousins who staggered off the planes at Idlewild
or the boats in Hoboken like shell-shocked veterans, speaking only Yiddish.
And I, with enough Yiddish left from childhood, listened to their stories,
how some survived by luck and some by guile and a few by kindness,
and I listened to their lingering nightmares.
After awhile, when they no longer needed to relive them,
when they could ease their thoughts into their newly-learned language,
they told me what they had heard of the American dream.
Published in Spillway
Mild Disturbance After Reading Kim Addonizio
At 5PM one afternoon I said to myself
it's time to bake my potato
and couldn't think why it sounded dirty.
I had been reading Kim Addonizio
and wanted to talk to her about orgasms
how it doesn't matter
once you're past eighty
unless you have a young lover
which I don't, and don't want
I had a friend
whose lover was younger than her kids.
He would eat their bananas
and forget to replace them.
It's the same with the old ones,
Living alone, baking potatoes,
setting the table for one,
I bless this harsh freedom, no one
to pass me the sour cream.
Pass me the sour cream, I say to myself.
Published in Shenandoah
Nascent January, 2018, After Rain
What a disappointment this century has been-so far.
This morning, after rain, I saw half a rainbow.
I mean, it aspired, it rose and spread and headed
higher, but instead banged into a cloud bank where
it got stopped dead.
The spread, though, was impressive,
bloody reds and purples and yellows; it was enough
rainbow for me. Perfected rainbow would have asked me:
of what you are given, what do you give?
Published in Rattle
To a Hawk That's Landed on My Deck
your stare your
on the body of death
rat rabbit or
nothing to rescue, as if
I'd match my courage to your claws
I've known your hover
settled, you have no song
stirred breast feathers, stilled wings
grounded here as I am
eating a dull meal
left to clear the remains
of what you brought down
in the pecking order of prey and necessity
what will I tear with my bare hands
when there is everything to rage about
Published in Rockvale Revue
© 2020 Florence Weinberger