Dine Libkes (born 1900), pen name of Dine Kipnis-Shapiro, moved to Kiev as a young woman and published a number of stories, poems, and translations there; a number of her poems were republished in Ezra Korman’s Yiddish anthology of women’s poetry, Yidishe Dikhterins Antologye (Chicago, 1928). Her poetry speaks of longings and sensual desires for other women, although without explicit eroticism. Libkes apparently survived WWII in Central Asia, and returned to Kiev after the war.

Dine Kipnis-Shapiro was the sister of the writer Itsik Kipnis and the wife of the poet Monye Shapiro. She was born in Sloveshne (Slovetshno), Volhynia, to a father who worked as a tanner. She received both a Jewish and a general education, initially in her hometown and later in Kiev where she completed a Jewish pedagogical course of study. For a time she worked in a children’s home, later in a Jewish middle school, later still as an assistant librarian at the Winchevsky Library in Kiev. Influenced by her older brother, she began to write herself and debuted in print with poetry in the newspaper Komunistishe fon (Communist banner) in Kiev (1922). From that point, she published poetry, prose poetry, and stories in: Komunistishe fon, Shtern (Star), the anthology Barg aroyf (Uphill) (1922-1923), and the almanac Ukraine (Ukraine)—all in Kiev; Di royte velt (The red world) and Sovetishe literatur (Soviet literature)—in Kharkov; Emes (Truth), Yungvald (Young forest), Pyoner (Pioneer), and Eynikeyt (Unity)—in Moscow; among others. She translated: N. S. Leskov, Di khaye (The animal) (Kiev, 1929), 37 pp.; S. Vasil’chenko’s Avyatsye-krayzl (The flying club) (Kharkov-Kiev, 1932), 58 pp.; Leonid Savel’ev, Di nakht fun dem ratn-tsuzamenfor (The night of the Soviet conference) (Kharkov-Kiev, 1932), 70 pp. She was a member of the Association of Revolutionary Jewish Writers in Ukraine and signed its declaration (Kiev, May 1927). Several of her poems, primarily from her first period as a writer, were included in Ezra Korman’s Yidishe dikhterins (Jewish women poets) (Chicago, 1928). During WWII she was in Central Asia. She was last living near Kiev.


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