Mizmor L'David Anthology 

 


Poetica Magazine, Contemporary Jewish Writing


2019 Anna Davidson 
Rosenberg Award-Winner

Anna Jacobson is an award-winning author and artist from Brisbane. Amnesia Findings (UQP, 2019) is her first full-length poetry collection, which won the 2018 Thomas Shapcott Poetry Prize. In 2020 Anna won the Nillumbik Prize for Contemporary Writing and was awarded a Queensland Writers Fellowship. Her website is www.annajacobson.com.au

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Our Country is on Fire
Anna Jacobson


Our Country is on Fire
Each year the Rabbi asks me to photograph
Chanukah in the City. Each year
Security tells me to delete the photos
they appear in. This year I get a lanyard saying:
‘Official Photographer’ from the Rabbi’s wife.
I capture falafel vans, klezmer bands, doughnuts
and latkes stands. Acrobats sail on stilts, trail
bubbles through sky. The giant menorah watches
men laying tefillin as children spin dreidels.
Dignitaries make apologies for ministers
who couldn’t be there. The Rabbi is carried skywards
in a cherry picker—I twist my lens to capture him
lighting the menorah, six-feet high. Once
there were fireworks. Now our country
is on fire, burning far longer than eight days
and eight nights. Our Prime Minister doesn’t believe
in climate change. He wants to silence
protestors. Our country is on fire.
And as the festival of lights begins— I let
my menorah radiate survival and hope, even
if I have to blow its candles out
before I go to bed.