Sunday 24 April 2016


LEYB VASERMAN (b. August 27, 1915)
            He was born in Rakitna, Volhynia, Ukraine.  Until age thirteen he studied in religious elementary school.  After WWII he was in Germany.  From 1949 he was living in the United States.  He began publishing poetry after the war in the anthology Shriftn (Writings) in Munich, and subsequently he published both poems and essays in the organs of Holocaust survivors in Germany: Undzer vort (Our word) and Undzer veg (Our way); as well as in Idisher kemfer (Jewish fighter), Tsukunft (Future), Unzer tsayt (Our time), and Fraye arbeter shtime (Free voice of labor), among others, in New York.  He authored a collection of poetry entitled Shtile likht (Quiet light) (Munich, 1949), 80 pp.; and Mayne mes-lesn (May days and nights) (New York, 1966), 156 pp.  He was last living in New York.  “In his verses, he associated with trees, mountains, grass, and other silent creatures,” wrote Shmuel Niger.  “Concerning people, he wrote prose essays….  Both in nature and in art, he sought ‘God’s eternity’—that which is absolute and unending in Him alone and in every creative person.  Creative in his eyes is also the person who grasped God’s work and the work of art, not only God and the divine person who created [that art]….  In the person of Leyb Vaserman, our artistic and art critical idea have acquired a new, quiet, and creative strength.”

Sources: Yankev Glatshteyn, in Idisher kemfer (New York) (November 18, 1949); Shmuel Niger, in Tog-morgn zhurnal (New York) (November 20, 1955); Y. Gar, in Fun noentn over (New York) 3 (1957), pp. 156, 174; A. Tabatshnik, in Vogshol (New York) 2 (1959).

[Additional information from: Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), col. 231.]

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