Nathan Szajnberg

Chapter 1: Ghostly Memory: (Tsfat and Spirits)

“Sofer, come with me to Tsfat to the kever of the ARI. I must pray to my father.”

Avi had returned from strolling to his morning service at his shul. As a Cohen, Avi was needed on Mondays and Thursdays when…

I Had the MD, But Three Moments Made Me a Physician.

Nathan Szajnberg, MD

Three episodes tempered me, like heat anneals steel, into physician-hood.

First, when I felt (not just knew) that I could save a life.

Second, being brought to tears by the silent suffering of a mean-spirited cancer…

Tehilim/Psalms, 115:

“Mouths they have, but don’t speak/

eyes, …, but don’t see/

ears …/but don’t hear/

Nose …but don’t smell/

No sound in their throats/….

The dead cannot praise Yah’/

Nor those descending in silence/…”

Tehilim/Psalms, 115

לא המתים להללו יה

ולא כל יורדי דומה


נהלל יה

Rumen-escences in the City on a Hill


“You saw her last night, Sofer? Your la femme de ta vie, the one you loved most?”

“Yes, Yossi. We did not say in Hebrew “l’hitra’ot” nor even French, “au revoir“ to see you again. Rather a goodbye.”

“You think for good…

(Ra’anana. )October 21 2005

Nathan Szajnberg

Stopping power is a matter of physics: mass times velocity. A .45 caliber has greater stopping power, but is slower because of its greater mass. The Berretta uses a .22; faster, perhaps more accurate, but less stopping power. …

  1. “‘Somova Bitch’ vas mein ferst Aenglish vords”

On the phone, a ring, a voice in Yiddish, and I know just to listen to my father.

Just listen.

“‘Somova Bitch!’ vas mein ferst Aenglish vords,” my father insisted. “Vee vus on Ellis Island, from docking de big ship from Deutschland. Vee…

Perched on my knee are two shrapnel, a gift from Yovel, the six year old I interview Friday in Kiryat Shemona during rocket fire. Two of three he found in his back yard, after the Katyusha hit the bright pastel rose painted kindergarten, catty corner from his house. One is…

April 6, 2006

N. Szajnberg, MD Copyright 2020

I arrived in SF in 1995, taking a position at the Family Mosaic, a modestly paid position, which I had recommended to one of my residents in Wisconsin: he forsook the SF job for big bucks in Arizona. Having talked-up the excitement…

(The only windmill in Jerusalem is the restored in Mishkenot Sha’anim, one of the first neighborhoods outside the Old City. A hidden motor moves it lazily.)

First the visit to Misrad Hap’nim, the Office of the Interior. Professor Sofer needed a new ID card — te’udat zehut — to get…

Nathan Szajnberg

Born in a German Displaced Persons' Camp, I grew up in Rochester and attended the University of Chicago College and Med School.

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