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The Burlesque Poetess reads "One taught the word diaspora before diaphanous"

Jojo Lazar in 2011.
Photo by Mick Murray

One taught the word diaspora before diaphanous

Hide the crown
Of matzo pyramid, kiss bitter herbs hello
Ransom Gramps later for green bills' third eyes
Mash Charoset more, taste apple un-scarred

Careless whips, cat-tails 'gainst knees
Because He split the sea for us
Under the Red waves of tablecloth
Napkins vanish, sometimes forty years (mica in the gums)

The river child rattles rust and hinges
We only think it's a Bast cat
Ancient sculpture, Elijah's staccato chisel tap
Is the sun-room unlocked? Tubers, bulbs

The one without mezeuzah
An artisan clay goblet of water
For Miriam's thirsty bruised hip
The desiccated bellydance, Spring

Unleavened Schadenfreude
For former captors, yet more bloody wine
Stick 'em up, pops, let's finish Seder
Pass the linen, Afikomen with ghost emergent
Burn-shaped face, is that Yitzhak? Yasser?

Present the prize
He has fed us manna
Next year in Glamsrael

© jojo Lazar


Jojo Lazar is a Boston-based multimedia visual and performance artist known as “The Burlesque Poetess.” She is a ukulele lady in steam-crunk phenomenon, “Walter Sickert & The Army of Broken Toys,” half of “The Tiny Instrument Revue” and a ruckus in “WHY ARE THOSE GIRLS SO LOUD it’s ‘cos we’re jewish.” If she had an umbrella perfor-ginization it would be called "Tiny Maccabees Productions," if she had a slogan it would be "Neologisms R-US."

She is a creative writing and zine-making workshop leader with a BA from Brandeis and an MFA in poetry from Lesley University. Her poetry has appeared in Connotation Press: An Online Artifact, A Bad Penny Review, Delirious Hem’s ‘SEAM RIPPER: Women on Textual & Sartorial Style,’ The Starving Artist’s Diet (Jackodile Press), Magpie Magazine, and additionally in her own zines, including “Niblet.”  She is also a new media admin. (and web-cheerleader) for VIDA: Women in Literary Arts.

Find out more at jojolazar.com, and check back later in the month for a feature on jojo Lazar on Jewesses with Attitude.

Topics: Passover, Poetry
1 Comment
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Todah rabah, merci beaucoup, i am so glad to contribute to this marvelous blog and community, Leah. Truly. xo

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How to cite this page

Berkenwald, Leah. "The Burlesque Poetess reads "One taught the word diaspora before diaphanous"." 4 April 2012. Jewish Women's Archive. (Viewed on March 2, 2024) <http://jwa.org/blog/burlesque-poetess-reads-one-taught-word-diaspora-before-diaphanous>.