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Poetry by Tom Berman 

Tom is the editor-in-chief of Voices Israel Anthology.


© 2006 Tom Berman


The Leather Suitcase

(Previously appeared in Ariga, Corner Poetry, Coffee Press Journal, PoeticDiversity, Lily)

They don't                                       

make suitcases

like that

any more.                                                              


Time was,

when voyage meant

train, steamship

distances unbridgeable

waiting for a thinning mail

weeks, then months,

then nothing


Time was,

when this case

was made

solid, leather,

heavy stitching

with protective edges

at the corners.


Children's train,

across the Reich


and starts again...



a lighted gangplank,

night ferry to gray-misted

sea-gulled Harwich

again the rails

reaching flat across

East Anglia,

to London


in my bedroom

the suitcase,

a silent witness

with two labels


"Masaryk Station, Praha"

"Royal Scot, London-Glasgow"


Leather suitcase

from a far-off country,


containing all the love

parents could pack

for a five year old

off on a journey

for life.



*From the end of 1938 until the outbreak of War

in Sept. 1939, about 10,000, mostly Jewish children

(unaccompanied by parents or adults) were brought f

rom Nazi-controlled Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia

to Great Britain under the Kindertransport scheme.

But for the Kindertransport, few, if any, of these

would have survived the War.






Galilee Spring 

(Previously appeared in Shards, a Handful of Verse, Poetry Life and Times, Corner Poetry, Coffee Press Journal)


Storks circling

rising with the thermals

on a blue sky


wings outstretched


the seasons


as this Spring


into Summer


wild oats wave

between purple thistles,

poppies nod and shed

red petals

lupines glow sapphire


beyond the lawn

kibbutz dogs run

scenting a dry season

behind the bushes


green fades to brown

imperceptibly spreading

over the hollyhock hills






All work is property of Tom Berman.


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