Hasidic teen’s uplifting poem goes viral

Marcy Oster

(JTA) — A poem by an 11th grade girl from a Hasidic family in Crown Heights has gone viral on social media.

“Worst Day Ever?” by Chanie Gorkin was first posted last year on the Poetry Nation website, where Chanie is a member. She was a semi-finalist in the website’s July to December 2014 contest and the poem was published in a collection of poems titled “Beyond the Sea: Odyssey.”

A copy of the poem was hung on a bulletin board in a grocery store where it was photographed last week and posted online, where it was shared and liked thousands of times on social media, according to Poetry Nation.

It took several days before Chanie was identified as the writer of the poem, which reportedly was first written as a class assignment. She is a student at the all-girls Lubavitch high school Beth Rivkah in Crown Heights.

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The poem sounds pessimistic when read from top to bottom, but the reader is instructed at the end of the poem to reread it from the bottom up to find out how the writer really felt about her day.

It reportedly has been translated into several languages, including Hebrew, Chinese and Russian.

Chanie’s mother, Dena Gorkin, who first shared the poem on her Facebook page without crediting her daughter as the author at Chanie’s request, told Poetry Nation that her daughter does not even know yet about the success of her poem since she is at summer camp and does not have access to a computer or the Internet. She said she is “glad that it’s having a positive effect on people.”

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