A Poetry Concert In Four Voices:"In Everyone There Are Four Sons".

A Poetry Concert In Four Voices:"In Everyone There Are Four Sons".

 Eilat, Southern District, ISR
BandSpoken Word

Original instrumental music by noted Israeli composer David Elharrar accompanied by artistic reading of Nilly Dagan's poetry by actress Gilya Stern. A Poetry Concert will appear in four languages – Hebrew, Arabic, English and Spanish.


Just published by Even Hoshen: In Everyone There Are Four Sons by Nilly Dagan. This is Dagan’s first book of poetry, simultaneously appearing in both Hebrew and in English.

The two books are accompanied by a CD featuring readings of selected poems to guitar improvisations by Amos Ever-Hadani. Opening and closing musical motifs are by David Elharrar, arranged by Ken Burgess. The Hebrew reading is by actress Tami Spivak and the English reading (in the translation of Susann and Ed Codish) is by actress Gilya Stern.

In Everyone There Are Four Sons is predicated on elements of multiplicity and variety. Every poem speaks in several voices, and the series of transitions surprise. Nilly Dagan weaves the high and the low, street slang and ancient sources, images and symbols from all over the world. All of these elements introduce one another and interchange, and associatively create the multi-vocal lyrical flow that is uniquely hers.

In the Jewish tradition, the four sons in the Passover haggada are viewed as archetypes of people, and parallel to the four elements which were viewed as the stuff of which all matter is comprised – water, fire, dust and air. The wise son is like pure water, the wicked like consuming fire, the simple like dust of the earth, and the son who doesn’t know how to ask like restless wind. Just as their faces differ, so do their opinions, says the Talmud, by which it seeks to tell us that a multiplicity of facets, faces, voices and colors constitutes a blessing for a fuller and richer multi-dimensional world.

Of special note is the artistic contribution by artist David Gerstein with his creation “Quartet,” 2007, the designer David Tartakower, and the musical producer David Elharrar.

The project In Everyone There Are Four Sons includes:

1. A book of poetry in Hebrew, accompanied by a CD with readings by actress Tami Spivak.
2. A book of poetry in English, translated by Susann and Ed Codish, accompanied by a CD with readings by actress Gilya Stern.
3. A limited dual-language collector’s edition, numbered and signed, hand-bound, accompanied by metal cutting by artist David Gerstein and hand-bound by Ido Agassi. To be accompanied by CDs with readings by actresses Aviva Marks (English) and Tami Spivak (Hebrew).
4. An English-language CD with actress Gilya Stern reading eight sections of the book. David Elharrar composed original music for each of the eight segments, and the music and dramatic reading interweave to create a spoken-word/musical experience.
This CD represents a preview of a collection called A Poetry Concert in Four Voices to be released in four languages – Hebrew, Arabic, English and Spanish – featuring four actresses.

Nilly Dagan
Poet Nilly Dagan came to poetry relatively late, having spent many years in the world of business. She has been writing poetry since 2005. Her poems have been published in Israeli literary supplements literary magazines. Just as she appreciated the insight at the core of In Everyone There Are Four Sons, so she envisioned four modes of expression participating together in a four-way artistic conversation: poetry, translation, music and reading. And so, the point at which other poets might feel that they have completed their task, was turned by Nilly Dagan into a new beginning. She contacted translators, composers, musicians and actresses, to become part of a project whose shape emerged, step by step, and swept them all into a collaborative artistic creation.

David Elharrar
The Tamuz Lifetime Achievement Award in the field of Artistic Production was awarded to David Elharrar, radio personality, actor and producer. He received the prize for a brilliant and multi-faceted career in music and production.
In 1950, at the age of 5, Elharrar immigrated to Israel with his family from Morocco. Elharrar’s long musical career in Israel covers many areas of achievement. He is a phenomenal singer with great taste in choosing material, a gifted composer, and an album and show producer for other artists where he always demonstrates good taste and originality. He is very active in promoting the Israeli music industry and original Hebrew songs, and has helped the careers of many other artists. Elharrar is also an actor and storyteller, and has taken part in a wide variety of TV and radio shows.

Ken Burgess
Israeli musician Ken Burgess was born and raised in England where he worked as a composer and musical arranger. Among others, he composed Tomorrow’s biggest hit “My White Bicycle.” He has worked with many bands, primarily those playing progressive rock, and was the musical producer for Israeli singer Nava Berukhin’s debut album, produced by Francis Lai, which won the Best Movie Song Oscar for “Love Story.” In Israel, Burgess has his own production studio, United Studio, in the city of Ramat Gan.


In Everyone There Are Four Sons - Part 1

Written By: Nilly Dagan

I survived the summer.

The sun beat down without mercy

searing my emotions.

Equally I divided

the degrees of heat

between us.

My red bathing suit was yours

your black one was mine.

Summer dried the purple of the


the vin suprieur I toasted to us

reddened time's scabbed-over scar.

I sank into an air conditioned room


The Unconscious Opens Like a Fan

and a jug of cold lemonade.

My thirst for you is like

litmus paper, changing

with every dip

of my tongue in your mouth.

When your

missing hand


the cleft of my modesty

only a step

between me and

the receding moment

In Everyone There Are Four Sons - Part 4

Written By: Nilly Dagan

Satan lives in Harlem on 125th Street

his ears are pointy

his beard goat-like

his eyes are black as coal.

Mornings, he juggles and drums on pots and pans

sips bourbon

improvises without a care.

They say that he was kidnapped off the Gold Coast of Africa

and got to America on a slave ship.

From the elevator shaft the smell of Cajun cooking rises.

The trumpet wail is swallowed in the noise of a blue garbage truck

containing a powerful moment

trapping the spirit of black music.

On Sunday, we'll sing gospel in church.

In Everyone There Are Four Sons - Part 3

Written By: Nilly Dagan

It is wonderful to see a rainbow
Stretched between the drops,
and it seems –
out of gray chaos
a blast of light –

Everything starts and ends
at a tiny point
in my brain,
spreads wave after wave
and I stare at a distant one
blurring, as if holding on to it
till it dissolves

I cross it towards you,
and I don't know if I'm

In Everyone There Are Four Sons - Part 5

Written By: Nilly Dagan

Sin city rich in stars
wears eternal night.
Armed in leather clothing
heavily made up
traded by cruel brutes
transmits crime in black and white.
The hottest comics in town.

Someone said that
life happens
you're making plans
and then they shot him.

In Everyone There Are Four Sons - Part 6

Written By: Nilly Dagan

You are there seeing but not seen
and I use my spells
to blow with my warm breath
to draw your pain away.

At dawn you send me
dusty branches of myrtle
and I arrange them in the transparent vase
placed next to the camel from Tunis.

In the nights I stir you
and tremble the wall of your silence
when gently I crumble your stubbornness
and am gathered with you into a cup of love.

When we sail to the end of the world, we'll live on a small island
south of the equator
among twelve tribes of natives
and God there is taller than everyone
his hand draws thin spells in the sand.

And on Sabbath evening we'll be hypnotized by a silver bowl,
gulping kiddush wine from a coconut shell.

Listen, the computer is sounding its shut down tune.

In Everyone There Are Four Sons - Part 7

Written By: Nilly Dagan

At the party after the war
I will wear the little black dress
that you liked, I will approach you,
put my hand on your shoulder
and ask: May I?
You will turn to me and say:

Is that you?

Let's take a break.
I'll read you "Utopia" by
Wis³awa Szymborska.
You'll sing to me of Anita and Juan.
I'll cook you a French roast in a black pot
you'll tell me about the small breasts of
Renoir's ample nudes.
I'll show you where I once had
a beauty mark removed.
You'll feed me forest berries from
Little Red Riding Hood's basket.

I dreamt that I managed to tame a wolf

In Everyone There Are Four Sons - Part 8

Written By: Nilly Dagan

My grandmother was once a friend of Anne Frank.
Today, she is a "getaway driver" taking the coastal road
to Netanya in a silvery automobile,
playing a CD of Vivaldi and pushing the pedal,
eighty miles an hour to the Four Seasons Hotel,
where she plays a wild card game.

If my grandmother had wheels grandfather would also have survived.

In a glass cabinet among old books
I find new readings of the Talmud in translation,
illustrated versions,
peek into the collection of eighty haggadot
examine Dan Reisinger's Four Sons
in the haggada "On this Night."
Grandfather, I remember, used to say:
In everyone there are four sons.

In Everyone There Are Four Sons - Part 2

Written By: Nilly Dagan

Part 2

Night gapes like a black mushroom
if I taste it I'll sink into hallucination.
Crazy night
you can harness me
bind me.

Jump, you shout, jump!
I jump
fall into the dark.

What, did I get lost?
I got to a town whose name I can't pronounce
the taxi driver explained life to me at length
in a language I didn't understand, in the art market I bought a fragile
urn that I don't need, and at the bar near the port I drank
a banana-colored drink I didn't know needed to be mixed with a quart of water.

I got drunk on crying.