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Agi Mishol


Translated from the Hebrew by Lisa Katz

So what have we got?

The sweet scent of jasmine,

the drawing of an orange sun

discovered suddenly

while cutting the persimmon in half

at the first volley of light.

The chicory flowersí

morning blue,

the entire meadow,

a cluster of snails

on top of a sea onion stalk

and there was also the word "wagtail."

What else was there?

The cicada requiem,

pink sheep in the sloping sky,

and the soft, much-kissed down

on the bottom of the catís ear

and thatís it, I think

thatís what we had


Agi Misholís poetry appears (with an interview) in the May/June 2004 World Literature Today, and in the March/April 2004 Tikkun; she spoke at NYU in April.  A peach and persimmon farmer, she is currently lecturer in poetry at Tel Aviv University, and a teacher at Alma College.  Her eleventh book of poetry recently entered its 4th printing in Israel.

Lisa Katz is co-editor of the Israeli pages of the Holland-based Poetry International web site (; she teaches in the English Department of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her poetry appears in Prairie Schooner Spring 2004; her translations have appeared in American Poetry Review and The New Yorker, and numerous other magazines.


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