Monday 23 November 2015


            This was the adopted name of Berl Dvorkin, born in Homel (Hamel, Gomel), Byelorussia.  He studied in religious elementary school, later pursuing design and architecture in the Baron Hirsch School in Vilna.  In 1911 he emigrated to the United States.  In that year he published his poetry for the first time in New York.  His work appeared in: Forverts (Forward), Varhayt (Truth), Yidishe beker (Jewish baker), Kundes (Prankster), Kibetser (Joker), and Yidisher gazlen (Jewish thief).  He also published a series of one-act plays and dramas.  He was editor of Dos fraye vort (The free word) in 1916 and of Literarishe heftn (Literary notebooks) from 1946.  Among his books: Herbst-blumen, a lider zamlung (Autumn flowers, a poetry collection) (New York, 1911), 36 pp.; Tog un nakht (Day and night), poems (New York, 1914), 36 pp.; Lo tirtsa (Thou shalt not kill) (New York, 1916), 32 pp.; Naye veltn, fir eyn akters (New world, new one-acts) (New York, 1919), 80 pp.; In di shturem teg, drama (In the stormy tags, a drama) (New York, 1927), 93 pp.; Iber unzer kraft (Beyond our strength) (Tahonga, 1951), 128 pp.; Gezamlte dramen (Collected plays) (Tahongo, 1951), 96 pp.; Bleter fun mayn gortn, lider zamlung (Leaves from my garden, poetry collection) (Tahongo, California, 1951), 96 pp.; Der vulkanen inzl (The volcanic island), adapted from English (Tahongo, 1951), 94 pp.; Der ruf in zikh, roman fun der ershter rusisher revolutsye (The call within, a novel from the first Russian revolution) (Tahongo, 1951), 76 pp.; Vilne, dray doyres, di leydn un libes fun borekhn (Vilna, three generations, the sorrows and loved of Borekh) (Tahongo: Literarishe heftn, 1952), 96 pp.; Kegn shtrom (Against the tide), a trilogy (Tahongo, 1952), 286 pp.; Zangen fun mayn feld (Songs from my field) (Tahongo: Literarishe heftn, 1955), 80 pp.; Antologye fun englishe un amerikanishe poetn (Anthology of English and American poets) (Tahongo: Literarishe heftn, 1957), 40 pp.; Dializm, lider-zamlung, 1910-1959 (Dualism, poetry collection, 1910-1959) (Tahongo: Literarishe heftn, 1959), 128 pp.; Naye gezamlte shriftn (New collected writings) (Tahongo: Literarishe heftn, 1960), 184 pp.; Fun fristn friling bizn shpetstn vinter, lider-zamlung in yidish, ivrit, english (From a delayed spring to late winter, poetry collection in Yddish, Hebrew, and English) (Sefat: Literarishe heftn, 1965), 159 pp.; A tate fun nisht zayne kinder, sotsyale drame (A father of not his children, a social drama) (Sefat: Literarishe heftn, 1969), 95 pp.  He also published a series of works in English.  His poetry was translated into Hebrew and published in book form under the title Alim migani (Leaves from my garden) (Los Angeles, 1955), 80 pp.  He used such pseudonyms as: Ben-Tsvi, Moris Di Van, B. D. Stoler, and A. Blumenkrants.  He also engaged with sculpture.  In 1958 his book Eseyen (Essays), 200 pp., was published in Tahongo.

Sources: Der Lebediker, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (New York) (October 27, 1952); Dr. Vilai, in Keneder odler (Montreal) (February 17, 1952); Sh. Ernst, in Keneder odler (June 28, 1954).

[Additional information from: Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), cols. 196-97.]

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