Fun with piyutim – Iti Milvanon, 3/4

Part 1, Part 2

One of the clever things about piyutim is all the little linguistic tricks they use. Rhyme, of course; I tried to use white space between stanzas to show the rhyming structure, but I think I didn’t use quite enough of it. So, there’s rhyme.


Then there’s alphabetical acrostic, which I’ve indicated with little pink-highlighted squiggles, and anadiplosis. Anadiplosis is also called שירשור, and it’s when one line begins with the same words as the previous line. I’ve used bigger squiggles for anadiplosis, coloured in pairs. See how the alphabetical poem connects to the verse block, which connects to the last stanza, which connects to the blessing?


The squiggles are from an old sketchbook, which I take to exhibitions and things for the express purpose of collecting squiggles and patterns and whatnot. The note in the sketchbook says “Ramban, Rome, 1469,” but I looked that up on the JNUL site (cheers, Gabriel) and I didn’t see my squigglies in it. So they must be from something else. I’ll find them one day.

The border elements are a combination of something I pulled from a museum catalogue (Adoration of the Magi, Fitzwilliam Museum) and New York City ironwork (always buy the catalogue, if it’s pretty, and always carry a sketchbook). The little coloured bits are the same colours as the writing nearby.

I used three weights of Pigma Micron pen for the border, that’s all. You can have a lot of fun with contrasting-weight pens. The coloured parts are my beloved sparkly watercolours, which shine and gleam and are HAPPY. Yay art supplies!


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