E. Simkhoni

in Voices from Shanghai

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print October 2008 | ISBN: 9780226181660
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226181684 | DOI:
E. Simkhoni

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  • Modern History (1700 to 1945)


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This chapter presents “My God, My God, Why Hast Thou Forsaken Me” (1942), a poem written by E. Simkhoni. Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor and the start of the Pacific War must have been a crushing blow to the refugees, who were now totally cut off from Europe. In this short poem, written no doubt as soon as war began on December 8, 1941, and with the Japanese occupying all of Shanghai, Simkhoni speaks for all the refugees. Only worms can still exist in peace; for other creatures darkness has fallen and all doors have been closed. God has abandoned the unfortunates, indeed, makes fun of their misery. Simkhoni took the poem's title from Psalm 22:1, which begins “Eli, Eli lamah azavtani.”

Keywords: poem; E. Simkhoni; Pacific War; Japan; refugees; Shanghai

Chapter.  488 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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