This week, May 6/Iyar 21, Creative Online Club was transformed into an open meeting serving a two-fold purpose: The JGU Magazine Team planned and arranged for our upcoming Shavuot Global Voices e-Magazine; and all Jewish girls, both present and viewing the recording, were encouraged with an invitation to participate in the opportunities JGU offers to budding and passionate writers, through a variety of mediums. They include Bloggership, magazine contributions, and compositions for our Voices of Leadership series, focusing at present on Voice of Sarah, just to name a few. We welcome you, dear friend and reader as well, and ask you to please consider your what you’re interested in, and how you too can get involved in inspiring and linking our Jewish sisters around the world. You never know how far your words can reach. Please don’t hesitate to be in touch, or leave a comment below. Enjoy the following sample from our amazing Creative Online Clubs!
Part 1 by Tzipporah Prottas, CT. USA: Yet another burning tear escaped the corner of my eye, splattering the already-delicate pages of the worn but treasured book I caressed in my hands. The moist spot warped the text slightly upon the page, and beckoned an inevitable new tatter. Nevertheless, the book was safe, the little book in which my heart rested – my twin-sister Ruchama’s only surviving possession – and that was all that mattered. Or was it? The modest diary wasn’t Ruchama… but I knew she had vested her heart and soul into it. I had refused to open it – I felt it was sacred – despite my family’s urges. My memory shifted to a vision of a girl who didn’t seem like myself: My mind and heart were utterly numb, even after the full Shiva week passed. As if afraid to disturb and arouse something, I tread gingerly through the ruins of my childhood home, transformed into an inferno just a week prior. Alone, with the distant echo of neighborhood traffic in my ears, I swiveled my gaze to and fro, yet not really seeing; that is, until my eye was caught by the glint of a silver clasp, poking from the ashes like a spring bloom from the earth. I felt a vice tightening around my heart and spreading up to my throat, so roused by this bittersweet miracle of a discovery. With trembling hands, I extracted it from the smoky blanket, and drew it to my chest. A new wave of tears surged to the fore, but this time I tucked the book safely out of harm’s way. As I curled up in the window-seat of my dear uncle’s home where we had sat Shiva, I wondered if Ruchama’s diary was a divine jewel of comfort, or rather a cruel and blatant reminder of her tragic passing – that the manuscript was spared but my sister wasn’t. Whichever it was, I had sworn to protect and preserve it at all costs. Today, a little whisper in my head nudged me to do something I had previously deemed impossible: I opened and peered into Ruchama’s diary.
Part 2 by Malkie Peiser, TN. USA:
Beneath the looking glass I could see
The essence within me
A spark, a light, a torch to brighten my night
Shivering through the woods of fright
“Where are you?!” I screamed
“What’s going on here?”
I don’t know what’s happened to me
It’s as if I trembled into a bundle on terror
Then I saw it – I saw the flowers blooming in happiness
The sun came out, the daisies bloomed
The grass turned from brown to green
I saw it, a vision like a dream
Then I awoke and saw my reflection by the beach
In the sand, sparkling through the head of my hands
Until I fell into the rainbow stream
Part 3 by Temima Rocklin, Toronto, CA: I awoke in a shower of tears, and thought about my dream. It was strange I had been having the same dream for five nights now, and that was not normal. Usually I had a different dream every single night; and none of my dreams were as vivid as this one.
Part 4 by Zissy Gelbman, NY. USA: And some people say that if you have a dream more than once, it means something in there will be real. I told my husband, and he said we should consult a tzaddik and ask him what do. We went to our local Chabad rav, and he said we should continue our lives regularly, and see what happens. The next day the same dream repeated itself in my mind during sleep. I felt like I wanted to kill this Ruchama because I had no idea who she was, and she kept disturbing my sleep. The next day a great turn of events happened: I got a phone call from someone named Ruchama who had the same birth date as me…
Part 5, by Neshama Sari, OR. USA.: Ruchama and I continued our conversation. My heart was skipping beats; who was this girl? Inside I felt as if I knew her; every night I saw her in my dreams. Even so, I felt my chest compressing with fear, as I flew into the bundle of terror in my dreams, or even now on the phone! “Who are you?” I asked her, with my voice stuttering and my hands shaking, almost dropping the phone onto the wooden tiled floor, which might have broken the phone on impact. “I’m Ruchama,” she replied. “Yes… but… do I know you?” My hands shook so hard and fast, my husband held the phone against my ear as I tried to stay calm. “Maybe, I mean, we do have identical birth dates.” I realized that there was only one or two explanations. Then, something popped into my head: I remembered I got a letter from a woman. “Ruchama, did you get a letter in the past week or so?” There was a silent pause. I was worried she was either ignoring my question, or had hung up.
“Yes,” she replied, surprising me. To be honest, I was not expecting a reply. “I did; it had half a photo in it, let me grab it!” she continued. “I’ll grab mine too!” I ran into my office room, grabbed the yellow envelope, and ran back into my bedroom. I pulled out half a photo with me as a baby in it, with a woman in half with her arm around me. I grabbed the phone rudely from my husband’s hands. “What does your photo have, Ruchama?” I said, holding back fear. She replied, “It has me with a half a woman holding me as a baby!” I explained my picture to her. We both realized we had to meet in person. We met at the main street park, we talked for a minute, then pulled out our photos. We put them together; they were two halves of one photo, of a woman we did not know, holding us as babies. We looked at each other and noticed we were long lost twins!
To be continued…
How do you think the story can continue? Submit the next part… by you! Please submit through the Jewish Girls Unite form (accessible here: https://jewishgirlsunite.com/submit/), with the subject/title/heading “The Ruchama Mystery”. It can be any length, from a few sentences to a paragraph or two; it can either continue the current theme and feeling of the story, or instead give it a twist and turn in an unexpected direction. It’s all up to you. Your piece will be reviewed for moderate editing, and added to this running post… growing the chain of empowered Jewish girls globally, through the gift and power of the written word!