Monday, May 14, 2007

5 Poems & 5 Explanations

Once there was a cheery elementary school principal who used to have the whole school repeat this mantra after him daily. I took a course with him in Torah U'Mesorah. He used to say, don't come on time - come early. Once he parked his car in a neighboring driveway so as not to be late. And the homeowner stormed into class furious.

"No matter what"
the Agudah rabbi said
"anyone says or does to me"
as he stroked his long brown beard
"I am a worthwhile person."
And the all the young
Centrist students
repeated each word


This one kind of speaks for itself.

Regina Spektor
and Rena Sofer went here
"and it breaks my heart."


For my present job I ride back and forth daily on a long road lined with trees. One day riding home, halfway between awake and asleep, I felt something. It was a memory. I recalled riding this ride home, very young. I recalled riding this same road several decades ago on the way home from visiting family on Sunday.

A few lifetimes back
rode Route 4 from Englewood
It haunts me still


Yesterday in the little shul/classroom across from theYUBM I noticed that the covering of the Aron was new. And I read it and realized that one of the men of the minyan had dedicated it in memory of his wife, who passed away on the fourteenth of Shevat 5767! That was a bit over three months ago. My neighbor's wife, also my neighbor died. And I didn't know.

She's just not around
Yesterday I saw her name
On the Parochet


Yaakov awoke from his Ladder Dream and says "G-d was in this place, and I - I did not know." And then he builds an altar of sorts. There are many meanings in his words. One is that we sometimes miss G-d being in a place - and G-d is in every place.

G-d is in this place
and I, I don't understand
Can I? I wonder.


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