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A stone archway carved with the words "Workmen's Circle" marks the entrance to a graveyard. Most of the visible graves have inscriptions in both Yiddish and English.

Elul: Recommitting to Imperfection

Elul is a time of reflection. We take account of our year, the highs and lows, and for any harms we’ve caused we begin the process of teshuvah. Teshuvah is often translated as “repentance,” though it means something closer to “return.” And while we take steps to recognize, desist from, and make reparation for our…

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A mural depicts a Roman-style column-lined forum where crowds of people trade, haggle, and exchange livestock. One man rides a donkey, another tends a camel. In the foreground, a line of broken columns suggest that this could have been the very location of the artist's imagined forum.

Av: A Fresh Start

I may lack the proper reverence for Av. I’ve heard it called the Moon of Destruction, of Thresholds, of Beginnings and Endings. It’s the month in which many of our people’s greatest tragedies took place—the destruction of both Temples, our expulsions from England and Spain, and numerous massacres stretching back from the Holocaust to the…

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Tammuz: The Hottest Month

There, the women sit and make the Heated God cry. Ezekiel 8:14 Tammuz was a Babylonian god. He began as a shepherd, became a farmer, and married Inanna, the Goddess of Desire. When her time came to go down to the Underworld, she sent her husband to die for her. His followers mourned his passage…

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A young woman crouches next to an archery target, giving a thumbs-up. She's hit the target with four arrows, one in each of the four concentric rings. The centermost is a bullseye.

Sivan: The Month of Listening

Listening, receiving, revelation—Sivan is a month of many names. What they all share in common is the idea that somewhere out there, something has a lesson for us, if only we can figure out how to accept it. This, historically, has not been my strong suit. Especially when it came to my writing, I was…

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A long table covered in a vintage lace tablecloth holds eight places set with nice dishes, cyanotype menus, homemade matzo, and a seder plate.

Passover: A Feast of Freedom

The story of Exodus is in so many ways synonymous with freedom. It’s become a powerful metaphor not just for the Jewish people but for countless others—formerly enslaved or incarcerated people, immigrants, refugees—who have found solace and empowerment in this story of liberation. It’s a story that recognizes the resilience of the oppressed and valorizes diasporic migration as a survival strategy as ancient as it is essential.

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A woman looks into a window cut into a massive concrete slab. The installation is part of a Holocaust memorial, but the sun is shining and the trees behind her are vibrant green.

Iyar: The Month of Healing

“Healing” has such a lovely ring to it. It makes me think of white light and soft bedding and gently flowing water—like when Frodo wakes up in Rivendell at the end of Return of the King.

But the past month has confronted me with the reality that healing isn’t really that peaceful. It’s uncomfortable. It’s frustrating. Sometimes it’s even painful.

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Two tired but smiling cousins stand behind a dining table laden with all the delicious Purim treats they've cooked: foulares, sambusak, naan, mujaddara, hummus, borani, muhammara, eier kichlach, and minestra with orecchiette.

Nissan: The Month of Freedom

It must be a truism at this point that the longer it takes to do something, the harder it is to begin. I kept telling myself I’d post for Rosh Chodesh Adar II, then late, then for both the new moon and Purim… Now here I am at the beginning of Nissan, simply accepting that…

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A collage of photos depicting female factory workers striking in the early 20th century.

International Women’s Day & The Uprising of the 20,000

It was hot in the Great Hall of Cooper Union the night of November 22, 1909, despite the chill autumn air. Thousands of young women packed together, sweating in their overcoats. Some had come straight from a long day’s work at a garment factory, while others had already been on strike for weeks. All of them had been there for hours.

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Set into the corner of an old building, a tile reads "Barrio de la Juderia 1492" above another tile with a Star of David and menorah design

Adar I: The Month of Joy

I had a lot to say in Tevet about anger—somehow, joy feels harder. This year, Rosh Chodesh comes right on the heels of International Holocaust Memorial Day, which, though the Hebrew months move around on the Gregorian calendar, is always celebrated on January 27, the day of the liberation of Auschwitz. That’s to say, the…

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Rebecca holds up her MFA diploma, grinning ear to ear

Shevat: A Month for the Trees

I’d hoped to have a lot to say this month, about growth, about intention, about grounding into a sense of place. I’d hoped to talk a bit about a book I just read called How to Do Nothing by Jenny Odell and tie it to my celebration of Tu B’Shevat, the Jewish “birthday of the…

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