Come On In and Have Your …Faith Lifted

The Torah-Like Wit & Wisdom of Michael Franklin Ellis

by Darcy Wallen & Editor Joan Ellis Shatkin

Select Format


Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 11/09/2019

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 5x8
Page Count : 132
ISBN : 9781504372138

About the Book

Dear Reader, Before you is a unique compilation of the poetry of my maternal grandfather, Michael Franklin Ellis – a.k.a. “Gramp.” This short manuscript highlights a selection of verses from his 13 published books of poetry annotated with parallel Torah excerpts. Do not let the brevity of this volume deceive you regarding its inherent depth! Before my mother’s passing, she assisted me in choosing various verses to include here, that were remarkably and intuitively Torah-aligned. Most of Gramp’s poems are witty and philosophical; some are outright sarcastic or sardonic. It was to the latter, more negative and ‘critical’ poems (the Torah tradition would call “Mussar-style”), that Mom gave a thumb’s down – these were rejected outright. In life, she always glossed over the negative and put a positive spin on things. Gramp had no formal Torah education, nonetheless, his poetry sounds as if it is informed by or taken straight from classic Rabbinic literature such as: the Mishnah, Talmud, Midrash, Biblical commentaries, Mussar and Chassidic Philosophy. Although brought up in a Jewishly-identified and culturally involved Jewish family, we were not Torah observant or knowledgeable of the traditions that The Torah and its commentaries provide. After close to four decades of living a Torah observant lifestyle and thirstily studying Torah whenever I can, while revisiting these poems, I am continuously amazed at Gramp’s intuitive, Torah-like, Kabbalistic and Chassidic bent. I am sure you will be in awe at the similarity too, as you read through this book and see the parallel Torah quotations we have included herein. You will see how Gramp’s humor and personality shines through with wit and wisdom in the upbeat style of the witty, Chassidic aphorism. Darcy F. Wallen (a.k.a. Rus Devorah Wallen) Granddaughter of Michael Franklin Ellis, ob”m Daughter of Joan Ellis Shatkin ob”m and Dr. Samuel Shatkin, DDS, MD, ob”m

About the Author

MICHAEL FRANKLIN ELLIS Michael Franklin Ellis was born June 11, 1896 and educated in Buffalo, NY, where he learned and then taught the art of advertising, publicity, public relations, and business administration. He went to Hutchinson Tech High School and then he got his start working under his very own father Newman Ellis, who had a smoking pipe company called The Ellis Pipe House. It was through promoting the company, that he got his start in advertising. He soon became a teacher and mentor to many throughout the advertising and public relations industry. He established Ellis Advertising Company in Buffalo in 1924—one of the first advertising companies in Western New York. Because Ellis had a humorous outlook on life, he was able to see the lighter side of every situation, which is captured in his many books of poetry. With book titles like: “Rhymes without Reason, Rhyme Doesn’t Pay, Ellis in Wonderland, Prhyme Ribs, Rhyme Marches On, A Rhyme A Dozen, In The Rhyme-Light,” etc., one can definitely gain a sense of Ellis’ sense of humor. Ellis served as either an officer or on the board of over 20 community and civic institutions, and participated in dozens more clubs and organizations. His life is best described by the statement: “When you want something done and done well, ask the busiest man you know to do it.” That was Mike Ellis. To know Mike was to know a devoted husband and family man, a sports enthusiast, a poet, a comedian, a clever businessman, and community leader. One of the secrets to his success he attributed to his wife, Corinne (Eloskey) Ellis. She was his inspiration for life and work. Michael and Corinne had three children, who blessed them with eleven grandchildren, twenty-two great-grandchildren and three great-great grandchildren and counting! Michael F. Ellis seemed to have a secret supply of hours to accomplish all that his calendar demanded and still give time to others. His life is best described by the statement, “When you want something done and done well, ask the busiest man you know to do it.” That was Mike Ellis.