Fargin by Joan Mazza


At last, a term for the opposite
of schadenfreude, Yiddish word
for a joyful feeling of sharing in
another’s happiness, success,
and wealth. Instead of taking
pleasure in another’s scandal
and humiliation, we celebrate
their accomplishments—not
just a book published, but one
on the bestseller list. We’re
thrilled to hear of the classmate,
neighbor, or cousin who got
elected, awarded a Nobel or Tony,
won the race. We don’t compare
ourselves or begrudge others’
triumphs as we plod in mediocrity.
We pass along their elation, spread
the Internet news, say, Congrats!
I’m happy for you! and mean it.


Joan Mazza has worked as a medical microbiologist, psychotherapist, and taught workshops on understanding dreams and nightmares. She is the author of six psychology books, including Dreaming Your Real Self, and her poetry has appeared in Crab Orchard Review, The Comstock Review, Prairie Schooner, Slant, Poet Lore, and The Nation. She lives in rural central Virginia.