Current City, State, Country
Birth City, State, Country
Sally Bliumis-Dunn is an Associate Editor-at-Large and feature writer for PLUME. She teaches The Personal Essay at the 92nd Street Y and works with private students on their writing. Her poems have appeared in New Ohio Review, New York Times, The Paris Review, PBS NewsHour, PLUME, Poetry London, Prairie Schooner, upstreet, The Writer’s Almanac, Academy of American Poets’ Poem-a-day, and Ted Kooser’s column, among others. In 2002, she was a finalist for the Nimrod/Hardman Pablo Neruda Prize. Her third full-length collection, Echolocation, published by Plume Editions/Madhat Press in March, 2018, was on the long list for the Julie Suk Award and a finalist for the Eric Hoffer.
What is the relationship between Judaism and/or Jewish culture and your poetry?
My mother was Christian. My father was Jewish and died when I was very young. He did not practice Jewish rituals in our home, but for me a certain mystery died with him. I have always felt drawn to Judaism as something that might help me understand my father more deeply as well as the culture of his family of origin. I feel like my poetry attempts to approach mystery of all kinds, especially of the natural world.
I associate a kind of questioning dialectic with being Jewish. This type of unearthing conversation was and is part of my own family’s culture to this day. And in my poems I try to bring opposites together to create a similar dialectic tension.
I have read and love rereading the stories in the Torah. When the Pandemic hit and we headed north to Maine, the Torah was one of the few books I took with me. I was very honored to have my poem, “On a Walk” included in the beautiful A Passover Haggadah, edited by Rabbi Hara E. Person and Jessica Greenbaum.
Echolocation (Plume Editions/MadHat Press, 2018)
Galapagos Poems (Kattywompus Press, 2016)
Second Skin (Wind Publications, 2010)
Talking Underwater (Wind Publications, 2007)
Links to Sample Works
U.C. Berkeley, BA, Russian Languages and Literature, 1983
Sarah Lawrence College, MFA in Poetry, 2001