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Ilana Kurshan

Daf Yomi Poetry

Lilith Magazine’s book editor, Ilana Kurshan, writes limericks to summarize her daily reading of a page of Talmud, or Daf Yomi. Her new memoir, If All the Seas Were Ink, is pegged to her 7.5 years with this Talmud discipline.

(Ketubot 22a)
A beautiful maiden-girl said
To the suitors who flocked, “But I’m wed!” 
And once every last dope 
Had abandoned all hope
She married her heart’s choice instead.

(Bava Kama 32b)
Chanina would say when the light
Would begin to fade each Friday night:
“Let us go greet the queen
Who has come on the scene
Like a bride, such a beautiful sight.

(Bava Metzia 58b)
If a convert comes by, you can’t say
“It was ten years ago to the day
That your Dad ate some pork
With a spoon and a fork”
Do not torture or turn him away.