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

Message in a Nutshell

I am separated for the benefit of my soul, and yours;

introvert, sheltering in place, for indeterminable hours,

by way of self-imposition, yet, reaching towards Heaven,

even beyond these confines, towards family and friends.

A complete year has passed, full circle since the proliferation

of coronavirus reached the shores of this once proud nation;

some brought to their knees in prayer, others stand in rebellion –

to all who will listen and receive carefully chosen words.

Awake from your slumber, for the time draws near,

later than we may have thought, the burden we must bear;

for the roots of modern day Babylon are being wrought,

as a new foundation is laid in place by the technocrats.

Acceptance of the new normal, will render us complacent,

while a promise of utopia is marketed by manufactured consent;

upon the ashes of society, the “building back better” trope

will usher in a brave new world, devoid of a soul.

The media purveys the call of the organizers of the lands,

who hold all of the cards in their multinational hands;

yet, mankind cannot transcend the problems of this world

without the divine guidance of the Ribono Shel Olam.

Floating Images

Pastel fluffy clouds,

as I drive westward in flight;

eagle captures sight.

If painted by an Ukiyoe artist,

the sky would appear to be closer,

to my recollection, than any words

that I may have to offer.

As if lifted upon eagle’s wings,

spring breeze soars through open windows.

My car slows down upon arrival;

the San Franciso Peaks tower majestically,

over this blessed day, replete with snowcaps.

Never before, have I had this sense of freedom; having left everything behind me, the new horizon seems endless. I digress, for this is but a moment in time, captured by the pen; yet, the actuality lives on. Having received a perpetual blessing, it seemed at the time; now, I realize that while memories like this never seem to fade, time continues to take its toll on my life. Still, nearby the peaks, sheltering in place, daily blessings are renewed like the cycle of the sunset and sunrise.