Thursday 15 December 2016


YUDIKA (July 7, 1898-1988)
            The nom de plume of Yudes (Yudis) Tsik, she was born in Gorzhd (Gargždai), Lithuania, near the German border.  She moved with her parents to London when still young.  At age six she returned with her family to the city of her birth.  Because of her family’s poverty, she was raised in the home of an aunt in Prussia, later with a brother in Frankfurt-am-Main where she worked in a business.  With the outbreak of WWI in August 1914, as a Russian citizen she was interned by the German authorities and remained until 1915 in a prison camp; later she moved via Sweden, Finland, and Moscow to Kharkov where she worked in a dormitory for seamstresses.  She also worked for a time as an educator in Lisichansk, Ekaterinoslav, and Rostov-on-Don.  In 1920 she moved to Moscow again, and from there made her way through Finland to Stockholm where she lived until 1922, before returning to Gorzhd.  From 1929 she was living in Canada.  She began writing poetry in Yiddish in her youth.  Later, while she was in captivity, she wrote in German.  From 1917 she wrote continually in Yiddish and, under the influence of Moyshe Taytsh, she joined the group of Ekaterinoslav poets (Perets Markish, Khane Levin, and Shmuel Rosin, among others).  She published work in Yiddish-language newspapers in Russia in 1918, later in a Kovno collection Vispe (Islet) in 1922, Mir aleyn (Us alone) in 1930, and in the Kovno daily newspapers Idishe shtime (Jewish voice) and Nayes (News); and after coming to Canada in Keneder odler (Canadian eagle), Royerd (Raw earth), Nyuansn (Nuances), Epokhe (Epoch), and Kamf (Struggle)—in Montreal; Tsukunft (Future), Morgn-frayhayt (Morning freedom), Yidishe kultur (Jewish culture), and Zamlungen (Anthologies)—in New York; among other serials.  She published in book form: Naye yugnt (New youth), poetry (Kovno, 1923), 40 pp; Mentsh un tsayt, dramatishe poeme (Man and time, dramatic poem), with a foreword by Dr. Esther Eliashev (Kovno, 1926), 78 pp.; Vandervegn (Wandering roads), poems (Montreal, 1934), 96 pp.; Shpliters (Splinters) (Toronto, 1934), 160 pp.; Tsar un freyd, lider un dramatishe poemen (Sorrow and joy, poems and dramatic poems) (Toronto, 1949), 222 pp.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 1; Z. Feydin, in Vispe (Kovno) 1 (1922); Shmuel Niger, in Tog (New York) (November 24, 1924); P. Vyernik, in Morgn-zhurnal (New York) (April 25, 1926); Ezra Korman, Yidishe dikhterins (Jewish women poets) (Chicago, 1928), pp. 231-37, 345; Dr. A. Mukdoni, in Morgn-zhurnal (October 17, 1934); Kh. M. Kayzerman, Idishe dikhter in kanade (Yiddish poets in Canada) (Montreal, 1934), pp. 121-25; N. Y. Gotlib, in anthology Lite (Lithuania), vol. 1 (New York, 1951), pp. 1101, 1103, 1116; Y. Y. Sigal, in Keneder odler (Montreal) (December 13, 1943; January 7, 1944); Sigal, in Vokhenblat (Toronto) (January 20, 1944); Z. Vaynper, in Di feder anthology (New York, 1945); N. Mayzil, Amerike in yidishn vort (America in Yiddish) (New York, 1955), pp. 763-65; Sh. Slutski, Avrom Reyzen-blbyografye (Avrom Reyzen bibliography) (New York, 1956), no. 4808.
Khayim Leyb Fuks

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