Ancient History Revival

Civilizations fall, others rise in their place.

We have not always inhabited the same space,

as our ancestors did, over the centuries;

thus, we do not always share the same memories.

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How can this be, that across the generations,

so much is lost to the plans of nations –

rearranging, reshaping the maps of destiny,

driving our ancestors abroad to other countries?

~~~~~ ~~~~~ ~~~~~

Fall back to the ways of prior days in the shtetl;

there is nothing lost, and only everything to be gained.

Return to the days of yore, when our forefathers saw,

ahead of time, the desolate nature of our souls,

and the promise of renewal from Above.

Waking Dream

Bolechov Synagogue, courtesy of Bolechow Jewish Heritage Society

“If you are a dreamer, come in.”

– Invitation, by Shel Silverstein

Standing in front of the door, I mustered up the courage to knock. As I was about to do so, I heard a voice from within the building say, “If you are a dreamer, come in.” Instead of knocking, I tried the doorknob. The door was unlocked; I entered into a synagogue, furnished with pews, lamps, an ark for the Torah scroll, and a bimah in the center where the rabbi and cantor were leading a service. I could hardly believe my eyes. I had travelled to Bolekiev, Ukraine from the States, to visit the town where my ancestors had once lived. At that time, the town was Bolechov, Poland, before the end of WW2. Now, instead of finding the caretaker inside of a dilapidated building, as expected, I entered into a world that I had thought vanished a century ago.

Eldridge St. Synagogue, NYC, courtesy of Howie Schnee