The Poetry of Journalism

Last week, Israel’s oldest newspaper, Haaretz, took a one-off chance, temporarily replacing its workaday reporters with 31 of the country’s leading poets and authors. The writers, as writers do, ran amok. They filed epic front-page news reports on daily life in the first person; ruminated about childhood in an interview with the country’s defense minister; and delivered the weather report as a sonnet. The market report, written by a celebrated children’s book author, read like a fairy tale: “Everything’s okay. Everything’s like usual. Yesterday trading ended. Everything’s okay. The economists went to their homes, the laundry is drying on the lines, dinners are waiting in place … Dow Jones traded steadily and closed with 8,761 points, Nasdaq added 0.9 percent to a level of 1,860 points …” [%comments]

Patrick Cher

Now this is truly CREATIVE. I wish we could get more info about the Haaretz editor and his team. They certainly induce their readers to think about their newspaper, and to focus their attention on things taken for granted -- what are news? Who decides that? Why?


That's great! What a brilliant idea. It is our artists and writers who really interpret our life, not the news. Made me smile!


Its a really good idea, newspapers should be willing to try anything given the dire position they are in. I hope something is sorted out, because the written media (can't call it print anymore, since lots of it never get printed) is a vital component of democracy that other forms can't fill. Informal written media will never be able to match the quality that the best quality newpaper can put together. Its just a pity that people are used to thinking of that is free. Advertising supported content is not free, just indirect payment. Maybe with a more creative approach, as this company has taken, will get people willing to pay directly, in some form, for the content. I'm hoping that the decision by California to move to electronic form textbooks will accelerate a movement to ebooks, which have some hope renevue wise for newspapers.


I love it.

Eric M. Jones

The harder it is to get (irrelevant) news from distant realms the more the newspaper editor had to depend on local talent. This usually comprised stories and poetry, recipes, tips and hints, astrology and tales of olde,

So it's not so surprising. Most of the news isn't so important anyway.


Awesome! Whats even more surprising that a leading newspaper would even allow it. Its nice to see that corporates can have a sense of humour and creativity at times!!

Another David

HAHAHAHA :D That's a win for Haaretz

Moyashi from Japan

The NYT would never do this. No paper in the US that does not receive most of its operating budget from a student union would do this. Shame.


One has to remember that this is a bit of a move of desperation by Ha'aretz. Their circulation has dropped to < 60K, compared to >150K for Ma'ariv and much larger for Yediot Ahronot (I could only find references that say it's the "largest circulation daily" in Israel). Original, for sure, but a gimmick nonetheless.


You say "gimmick" like it is a bad thing. :)


@#9 -- Nice try, but the real figures are exactly opposite. According to audited figures, the number of paid subscriptions to Haaretz grew by 8.4 percent in the last year and reached an all-time high of 72,000 copies, while Maariv is down 20% and Yedioth flat.
In marketing language, a gimmick is a unique or quirky special feature that makes something "stand out" from its contemporaries. So, yes, you could call it a gimmick if you're inclined to.