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Poet Amira Hess dies at the age of 80 | Israel Hayom

2023-12-01T11:10:01.106Z

Highlights: Poet Amira Hess dies at the age of 80 | Israel Hayom. Amira Hass, winner of the Prime Minister's Prize for Creativity, passed away today (1/12) after a long battle with cancer. Hess has published 13 books in her lifetime and won a variety of awards. Among her notable books are: "The Bulimia of the Soul" (Helicon, 2007), "There Is No One Really in Israel" (Keter Publishing, 2003), "Amira's Zodiac Book" (with Oved, 2018)


Amira Hass, winner of the Prime Minister's Prize for Creativity, who published 13 books of poetry, passed away today (1/12) after a long battle with cancer


The poet Amira Hess died today (1/12), at the age of 80, after a long battle of over a decade with a serious illness. Hess has published 13 books in her lifetime and won a variety of awards, including the Lurie Prize awarded to her debut novel "And the Moon Dripping Madness" (in 1984), the Amichai Prize awarded to her in 2015, and the Prime Minister's Prize for Creativity, which was awarded to her twice.

Hess immigrated to Israel with her family in 1951, when she was eight years old. In the family, the Inchi family (a name that later moves to Bar-Haim) had seven children. They lived in the Yokneam transit camp, and in interviews Hess said that for her, the move was a radical change. In Baghdad, she said, the family lived in a beautiful, spacious house maintained by a team of servants. She and Reuven, her younger brother, were cared for by a personal therapist who often spoiled them with honey and kaimar (Iraqi butter).

In high school, Hess trained as a laboratory worker, and later worked as a secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture and the Government Press Office. Later she began to appear as an actress in the Train and Khan theaters, and after participating in a poetry workshop under the guidance of Asher Reich and later in Dalia Ravikowitz's workshop - she began to write.

Her first book of poetry, published when she was 41, was praised and defined as revolutionary, thanks to the unique combination she made between the world of tradition and the new world. After that, she continued to publish her poems in books and a selection of periodicals. Many of her poems have been translated into a variety of languages. Among her notable books are: "The Bulimia of the Soul" (Helicon, 2007), "There Is No One Really in Israel" (Keter Publishing, 2003), "Amira's Zodiac Book" (with Oved, 2018) and "The Sorrow of Imprisoned Loves" (HaKibutz HaMeuhad, 2021).

Hess was considered by many to be an oriental feminist poet, but she did not like the attempt to enclose her in a fixed slot or give it a title. She also used to say that the literary awards she received interfered with her ability to write authentic poetry. In an interview with Yaakov Bar-Or, Hess said that her rich Hebrew comes from prayers she remembers from home in Iraq, and that the reverence she developed as a child for the language required her to make an effort to make words simpler, so as not to write only in a high language.

In an interview with Noa Limona in Haaretz, she said that she writes incessantly, even though she finds it unbearable, but that it is "a scratch that was born with her and there is nothing that can be done." In addition to the abundance of books and poems she published, she said that she has a suitcase full of poems waiting to be published.

Hess lived in Jerusalem. In addition to her poems, Hess also published prose, and used to paint.

Among her poems

On the border of hope between heaven and water
in the line that passes between the seas, there is suddenly a finger in glowing shades, there is the tearful magic wand,


and I will write from the bottom of my heart from the depths I have read you.
Your request that you answer, that you make me heaven and their army with tempting acetaginousness,
that you will often erase my
griefs,
that you smoke a tree whose roots are planted
in the heart of things and to which no forbidden decree applies,
wait a moment and all the lights will be turned on in the frost of Santa
Veri Close To Reality

***

Since his death
, the valley river has been digging in my depths.
Once upon a time we had a house on the banks of time, with a floor of stars and a
sky of burning suns,

illuminating all times.

From the book "The Sorrow of Imprisoned Loves", courtesy of Kibbutz HaMeuhedet Press

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Source: israelhayom

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