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Torah Commentary Blog

Parashat Haazinu (September 7, 2013)
by Sherry Nehmer

I stood upon a high place,
And saw, below, many devils
Running, leaping,
and carousing in sin.
One looked up, grinning,
And said, “Comrade! Brother!”

THIS IS ONE of my favorite poems. It’s by Stephen Crane, who also wrote the famous Civil War novel The Red Badge of Courage and a number of stories, novellas and short poems (including the chilling “War is Kind”), before dying at 28. Like Crane’s life, this poem is brief, but it packs a punch in the last line with its message — the writer above is as sinful as the devils frolicking below.

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