“One of the most beautiful collections of poetry that I have ever read,” is what author Dror Burstein wrote when Israel Pincas’s volume of collected poems appeared in 1999. Many others have also praised the poems, equally enthusiastically. A poet beloved by poetry lovers, he burst onto the scene in full force from his very first works. His refined and restrained poems refer to the cultural and artistic traditions of the countries along the shores of the Mediterranean Sea – Greece, Italy and France – and are in constant dialogue with their glorious and epic histories, as expressed in Greek and Roman mythology, in the Renaissance civilization, and in the masterpieces of the 19th century. That said, his modernist poetry relates to the revolution Israeli poetry underwent in the 1950s and 60s. Pincas may have turned his back on topical matters and never wrote political poetry, but he did express personal, family and collective memory. His poems depict is childhood in Tel Aviv in the 1940s and 50s, the feelings of the persecuted refugees who migrated to the Land of Israel, and the sorrow over the fallen of Israel’s wars. But even as he addressed the distress of the individual and the collective, he remained an existentialist poet reflecting upon the human condition.
Antennae and Sensors and Do You Still See Me? are Pincas’s most recent books. Antennae and Sensors contains fragments that dovetail prose and poetry, reality and illusion, diary entries and Kafkaesque aphorisms. “The fragment is, in effect, a kind of fraction,” Pincas writes, “a partial sketch, or the beginning of something without a defined middle or end … The direct continuation of my poetic writing and a late stage of it.”
A lovely book.
Author Dror Burstein, Literary Blog
This book captivated me right away … Pincas’s silence has been broken in an awe-inspiring way. The poet’s voice has subsided and submerged, and a new voice has emerged from it – the clear and reverberating voice of a writer of prose. Antennae and Sensors is a deceptive masterpiece that stirred me in three different ways: Firstly, in and of itself; secondly as a new highly inspired stage in Pincas’s biography as a poet; and in addition to all this, as a document that displays a sharp sensitivity to the tension between poetry and prose … The Mediterranean vision with its linguistic vividness has given way to a new kind of exemplariness, darker and more concrete, which gives us an unforgettable self portrait of a unique poet at the beginning of the eighth decade of his life.
Eli Hirsh, Yedioth Ahronoth
The fragments with which Pincas allows tangible reality to penetrate the dreamy atmosphere and conquer it are among the most beautiful and touching in the book.
Erez Schweitzer, Haaretz
Any cultured encounter with the poet Israel Pincas’s superbly crafted book must not be a momentary encounter. Take time … A sensitive poet, scholarly and very wise … It leaves behind it islands of contemplation. You are not the same person when you depart from it as you were when you arrived … A marvelous book … I shall go back to this book many times, and I will find in it a comforting wisdom … Pure poetic beauty.
Nathan Roi, Literary Blog
Pincas’s poetry is unique and exciting … His poems are the end product of a Sysiphean distillation process … He captures moments that are on the surface no more than time that is passing, air that is moving, but the power of documentation makes them highly meaningful, unforgettable.
Omer lachmanovitch, Israel Hayom