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Rosenblatt, H.


ROSENBLATT, H. (pseudonym of Ḥayyim Royzenblit ; 1878–1956), U.S. Yiddish poet. Born in Rishoshe, Poland, he emigrated to the U.S. in 1892. From the age of 13, he worked in a sweatshop. Having tried 15 different professions, Rosen blatt turned to poetry, with which he had always been preoccupied. From 1900, he published his lyrics in Yiddish periodicals. At first he was under the influence of Morris *Rosenfeld and followed the realistic tradition of the "*Sweatshop Poets," but he also felt the impact of the Yiddish lyric masters S.S. *Frug, Abraham *Reisen, *Yehoash, and of English and American poets. He reproduced in Yiddish verse the rhythms, alliterations, and assonances of Edgar Allen Poe's "The Raven" and Oscar Wilde's "Ballad of Reading Gaol." In symbolism he discovered a more congenial style for his lyrics. The impressionistic literary movement, Di *Yunge, then hailed him as its precursor and ally. In 1916 he edited the Detroit literary weekly Detroyter Vokhnblat, obtaining contributions from poets and novelists of Di Yunge. In 1921 he settled in Los Angeles where for more than a third of a century he was a central figure in Yiddish cultural life. The collected poems of his pre-California period appeared in 1915, but his best lyrics, ballads, and contemplative verses were the later works included in the volumes Odems Kinder ("Adam's Children," 1944), Mayn Likhtike Nesiye ("My Illustrious Journey," 1944), In Shenstn Tog fun Harbst ("On the Nicest Day of Autumn," 1953), and Far-Nakht ("Evening," 1957). Rosenblatt discovered for Yiddish poetry the American West, especially California's deserts, mountains, and ocean, and versified legends of Native Americans. His poems, set to music by various composers, had a calm, optimistic attitude and a gentle humor.


Rejzen, Leksikon, 4 (1929), 299–305; J. Glatstein, In Tokh Genumen (1956), 255–60; S.D. Singer, Dikhter un Prozaiker (1959), 14–18; E. Brownstone, Fun Eygn Hoyz (1963), 96–100; S. Liptzin, Flowering of Yiddish Literature (1963), 197–202; Shunami, Bibl, nos. 4195–96. add. bibliography: B. Rivkin, Yidishe Dikhter in Amerike (1947), 119–36; Y. Pat, Shmuesn mit Yidishe Shrayber (1954), 243–60; B. Grin, Yidishe Shrayber in Amerike (1963), 101–4; Sh. Niger, Yidishe Shrayber fun Tsvantsikstn Yorhundert, 1 (1972), 336–48; J. Glatstein, In der Velt mit Yidish (1972), 26–30; lnyl, 8 (1981), 430–33.

[Sol Liptzin]

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