Rachel R. Baum
Current City, State, Country
Birth City, State, Country
Rachel R. Baum is a poet. She serves as Chair of the The Poet Laureate Committee that will select the first Poet Laureate of Saratoga Springs. She is the founder of the Moving Mountains Poets Group and the Saratoga Peace Pod.
As a Certified Professional Dog Trainer, she was the At Home Dog Trainer, LLC for 15 years. She blogged regularly for the Albany, New York Times Union as “BARK! Confessions of a Dog Trainer,” and later continued it on her website. Prior to starting her business, she was Assistant Dean of the College of Computing and Information at the University at Albany. She served as President of the New York Library Association in 2007.
What is the relationship between Judaism and/or Jewish culture and your poetry?
It would be impossible for me to separate my Jewish heritage from my poetry. I would say I write at least one poem every week that is Jewish-themed. I have written anecdotal prose poems about my synagogue experiences as a child, about holiday gatherings on Yom Kippur, Rosh Hashanah, and Passover, and about Jewish life cycle events such as funerals, sitting shiva, weddings, divorce, and raising children.
Even my so-called secular poetry is influenced by the values and teachings I learned from Hebrew school many, many, years ago, to my own personal study of Torah, listening to sermons by various rabbis, and learning from my children, both of whom attended a Solomon Schecter school from kindergarten through 8th grade.
Although my day-to-day practice of Judaism has evolved over the years, it is a fundamental part of me, and is therefore reflected intrinsically in my writing.
In Dreams Cars Flew (chapbook; Dancing Girl Press, Fall 2023)
Funeral and Memorial Service Readings, Poems and Tributes (McFarland, 1999)
Links to Sample Works
University of Houston, Bachelors of Art
University of Michigan, Masters in Library Science
Rice University, Certificate of Publishing