Umbrella
A Journal of poetry and kindred prose


Judith Kerman

has published eight books or chapbooks of poetry, most recently Galvanic Response (March Street Press, 2005) and the bilingual collection, Plane Surfaces/Plano de Incidencia (Santo Domingo: CCLEH, 2002).

Her book of translations, A Woman in Her Garden: Selected Poems of Dulce María Loynaz (Cuban; Cervantes Prize laureate, 1992) was published by White Pine Press in 2002 and she is also the author of a book of prose poems, Mothering & Dream of Rain (Ridgeway Press, 1966).  

Kerman was a Fulbright Senior Scholar to the Dominican Republic in 2002, translating the poetry and fiction of contemporary Dominican women. She publishes Mayapple Press and was founding editor of Earth’s Daughters.


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Metaphysics

The rabbi asked,
he wasn't really an atheist
was he? More of an
agnostic? But you
imagined the universe
mechanical. I don't know
if that meant gears. Perhaps
atomic nuclei. When I said
the world is a living being
you called me Pantheist,
an affectionate insult.
We never talked
metaphor, although I probably
learned it from you.
What is left then
under the flat lawn with its sprinklers
under the sandy soil
in the concrete vault
in the wooden casket
in your good sports jacket
in the skin bag
among the suppurating microbes?
You are gone beyond
the blank black door.
That's all
anyone can say.