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Haikus for Jews: For You, a Little Wisdom Hardcover – September 7, 1999

4.5 out of 5 stars 50 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

"Of all the many forms of Jewish-Japanese poetry, the Jewish haiku is perhaps the most sublimely beautiful," begins the foreword to the wickedly funny and tirelessly bizarre Haikus for Jews by David M. Bader. If you can't abide a little fun with stereotypes, read another book. But if you don't mind a little ribbing, take a look at the following haiku, which gives only a mild taste of the yummy-as-lox treats gathered in this collection: "Jewish voodoo tip -- / mention an acting career, / then watch for chest pain." And if you liked that, you'll love this: "Lightbulb out again -- / how many of us must meet / to change it this time?" And they just keep getting better.

From the Inside Flap

Why is this haiku book different from all other haiku books?
For centuries, the Japanese haiku has been one of the world's most dazzling poetic forms. In just three short lines, it captures the sublime beauty of nature--the croak of the bullfrog, the buzzing of the dragonfly, the shriek of the cicada, the scream of the cormorant. Now, with Haikus for Jews, there is finally a collection that celebrates the many advantages of staying indoors.
Inspired by ancient Zen teachings and timeless Jewish noodging, this masterful work is filled with insights that will make you exclaim, "Ah!" or at least "Oy!" Whether you are Jewish or you simply enjoy a good kosher haiku, these chai-kus (so called because of their high chutzpah content) are certain to amuse. What's more, with each poem limited to seventeen syllables, Haikus for Jews is perfect for people in a hurry. Find out why God has made these The Chosen Haikus.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Harmony; 1 edition (September 7, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 060960502X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0609605028
  • Product Dimensions: 4.8 x 0.5 x 6.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #264,580 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As an author of Jewish humor, I hate admitting anyone but me is funny, but Haikus for Jews had me roaring with laughter, and so did everybody that I gave a copy of the book to. This is a perfect gift to bring the hostess when you're invited to dinner. It's a lot cheaper and will last longer than a good bottle of wine ... unless one of the other dinner guests steals it. It is a perfect gift for anyone with a sense of humor. I loved it.
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By A Customer on February 3, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This is a unique book. I haven't seen another one like it! Japanese imagery is intertwined with Jewish themes to create some highly original humor. It doesn't rely on stereotypes. It parodies old stereotypes and it includes new areas in its haikus. "No fins, no flippers... the gefilte fish swims with...some difficulty" or "Seven-foot Jews in ... the NBA slam-dunking... my alarm clock rings." Some of the poems are downright hilarious. All have a certain fun quality. I have given the book to countless people at this point, all of whom enjoyed it. Almost any intelligent reader will get it and sometimes even laugh out loud.
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Format: Hardcover
So you thought I would / Write a Jewish haiku to / Sell this book. Guess not.
Bader, a Hahvahd Lawyer, and the author of"How to Be an Extremely Reform Jew" provides the essence of the faith in 5-7-5 / 17 syllable portions. Like the Japanese ahiku, the Jewish haiku (or CHAI-ku) includes 'a kigo', or a 'season word' hinting at a time of year. It is sheer genius. My favorites were one about a mohel pruning the growth in his garden and: Heimlich. Is that a / Jewish name? I wonder as / a diner turns blue.
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Format: Hardcover
I am part of a vast network of Jews who send jokes back and forth over the Internet. None are as funny as the ones in this book (and I'm very sensitive about stereotypes). I suspect people who don't laugh out loud of 1) not being Jewish, 2) not being able to read, or 3) having problems that must be solved with powerful drugs. I say that we pressure publishers to reissue Bader's other book, How to Be an Extremely Reform Jew.
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Format: Hardcover
I have been a student for Haiku for a long time and now am teaching at workshops about the Haiku form, but most importantly, the Haiku spirit. I came from Japan and I am very flattered to notice how popular Haiku is in the Western contemporary literary circle. While Haiku is a form of Japanese poetry that states in 3 lines of 5-7-5 syllables a spiritaul insight, I tend not to bother with the syllables (because Japanese syllables and English syllables are totally different) but focus on whether the poet has captured the Haiku spirit- which means Zen. As far as I am concerned, David M. Bader's Haiku for Jews has got it! You can tell within 2 poems. And the rest is just a truly enjoyable read. The other great poetess that I think also got the essence of the Haiku spirit is Lily Wang. Her newest work, BABY HAIKU, contains many moving Haiku. Though the subjects are totally different, their powerful applications of the Haiku form are impressive. I am using them both for my Haiku classes.
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Format: Hardcover
David Bader has come up with a masterful concept: combine the poetic form of Japanese Haiku with kvetchy Jewish plaint. And bubule, it works.
The book is best savored like bonbons, just a few at a time. Some are wry, some confirm the American Jewish experience, and some are laugh-out-loud funny; even my shaygitz husband completely lost it with:
Today I am a
man. Tomorrow I return
to the seventh grade.
I got it as a birthday gift and I LOVED it! Buy one for a gift and another for you.
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Format: Hardcover
So, lots of money
for a little book. Buy it
anyway. You'll plotz
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Funny, insightful, provocative, and wise, this book will cause the reader to laugh out loud while shaking the head and saying," It's true." Great gift.
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