The Quality of Life

Life is sanctioned by G-d,

for the sake of mankind:

to create harmony amongst us,

and the rest of His creation.

Life is disrupted by the neglect

of attention to the myriad details of its complexity,

lack of respect to the values of others,

and disavowal of responsibility to the voiceless.

Life does not repeat itself

by way of reincarnation,

nor can it be preserved by downloading

your essence onto a mainframe computer

or uploading your memories

into the artificial brain of an android.

Life only gives us one chance

to make the most of every day,

as we journey along the path to fruition

of all of our efforts, both material and spiritual,

culminating in an eternal reward.

Life regards kindness, compassion,

and helping others as assets

in our spiritual bank account;

and meanness, hatred,

and harming others as deficits

that will accumulate against us.

Life holds all things in balance,

as the Creator looks on with keen awareness

of the plight of mankind,

inclusive of every individual

on the face of the planet.

dVerse prompt


Divine Preservation

Salt and pepper,

addictive seasonings,

reserved for minimal use.

Crystal granules –

for Shabbos challah,

preservative of the Covenant.

And, spicey crushed peppercorns,

to assimilate fresh turmeric,

combined with ginger,

over coconut milk,

plus four tablespoons

of unrefined coconut oil,

to preserve proper

brain functioning.

dVerse prompt

False Memories

So-called memories

retrieved in office visits,

all proved to be false.

Beginning in the 1980’s, an epidemic of cases were reported across the States, having to do with childhood trauma. What appeared to be an epidemic was mostly the result of what today is a widely discredited type of pseudo-therapy called recovered memory therapy. Through psychological priming of information, guided imagery, hypnosis, and dream interpretation, many people’s lives were turned upside down, having been coerced into believing in what never happened. It is a story that must be told, to let the healing unfold, and prevent similar psychological contagions from occurring again.

Over the course of ten years, my childhood recollections were obscured, as dark memories began to surface, during office visits with my therapist. The innocence of my youth became corrupted by the shadows that passed before my eyes. My therapist painted an ever-changing picture of an array of implications. He cast doubts in my mind about my family, tempering the unpleasant into the horrific. Needless to say, this took a toll on my psyche, bringing me into the depths of my own private hell.

Until, one day, I was released from bondage to this evil form of therapy and gained distance both geographically and timewise from my therapist. Divine guidance led me to the False Memory Syndrome Foundation, where I first learned about the flexible nature of memory. Upon returning to the Southwest, one day, in a moment of revelation, everything changed when I realized that all of these shadows were nothing more than empty lies. Only recently, have I been able to “reclaim my past,” by reviewing my actual memories of childhood and young adulthood, in order to see them within the true light granted to me from Above.

dVerse prompt

Silent Confession

Somewhere, across the night, a soul wanders past midnight, without a home to call one’s own. Once, at 3 a.m., I had the light on in my apartment. Someone, ran from across the parking lot to my door, immediately going for the doorknob, trying to unlock the door without even knocking. Sure, in retrospect, I have more compassion for him than I did at the time. Yet, the survival instinct kicks in immediately upon threat; so, of course, I did not open the door at that time. This is despite the fact that I have opened my door, so to speak, for near strangers, even several, that I had only met that day, and gave them a place to rest for the night. However, unless one embraces a policy of radical charity, it is necessary to draw a fine line at times.

Then there is the time that I invited a friend of mine over for Passover, a number of years ago. He knocked on my door a little earlier than expected. He told me that he had met someone in the park, who might like to attend the seder. I was hesitant; I decided not to grant the invite to the stranger whom he had met, moreso out of selfish reasons, than anything else. I was looking forward to a night of discussion on the various passages of the Haggadah, wherein my friend and I would each share our own insights. I was unwilling to have any disturbance of that endeavor, even for the sake of hospitality.

Yet, in not granting permission to have another guest at my table, I missed the mark and inadvertently went against the words found in the very Haggadah that we read from that night. “All who are hungry – come and eat. All who are needy – come join the Passover celebration. Whether or not I’ll get another chance to do the right thing in a similar circumstance, I do not know. And, so, my obstinacy that night may continue to echo as silent reminder of my negligence.

Silent memories,

drift unseen across the years;

surfacing at night.

dVerse prompt

Window of Vision

A window into time,

is challenging to rhyme,

bringing past, present, and future

together into harmony…

Whenever I reflect upon my heritage,

I am transported back to the shtetl

of my ancestors on my father’s side of the family.

Especially, on Yom HaShoah, the day of remembrance

elicits bittersweet emotions.

On the one hand, at least twenty-eight

members of two families perished.

On the other hand, two other families

immigrated to the goldene medina,

bringing forth several generations

of Yidden, who know their heritage

to a greater or lesser degree,

upon the continuum of faith.


Gazing into the future,

I see the final generation

standing in its tenacity

against the tides of change,

and the storms of fear,

that are upon the horizon.

In expectation of Moshiach,

I wait for his arrival, here –

Ad mosai?


Existing in the present,

I try not to get caught up in the turmoil,

nor thrown off balance by the daily news,

that seems to be narrating prophecy

in real-time sound bytes, some confused,

on the way toward the final countdown

of the Geulah (Redemption).

Take heart, I say to my soul,

in the things that you know

will not fail, nor perish –

everlasting life, waiting

right outside the window,

after the Tehillas HaMeisim,

into another time –


©2023 all rights reserved

dVerse prompt

Always Remember

You tell me it’s the institution… well you know, you’d better free your mind instead.

Revolution, by the Beatles

As the earth revolves,

does the mind evolve?

Do morals matter?

Is the soul in tatters?

Calling for a revolution

will not bring an evolution

of humankind to fruition.

For, if we abandon our past,

nothing that matters will last,

as tyranny holds fast.

©2023 all rights reserved

dVerse prompt

Words Blossom

While my speech was limited, and any thoughts expressed nil, over the years, my reticent nature compelled me to remain silent most of the time. Perhaps, not being able to find one’s own way in the world, while tethered to the past, and grounded upon nothing more than the shifting sands of emotions, without a framework for viewing the world, how can a meaningful statement be made?

Yet, from time to time, the seed of a poem laid dormant in my heart,* until flowing out like a tributary into the ocean, my words, inspired by the depths of my soul, made their way onto paper, and eventually to the ears of others, when I read them out loud. Now, every morning, when I wake, thoughts coalesce, and sometimes the best of them resurface on a page during the day. My soul yearns to blossom.

*from “Winged Words,” by Valsa George

dVerse prompt

Springtime Reconciliation

Summer fades into the autumn greys,

and soon winter will arrive with the decay

of the leaves on trees, and blooming things.

The prairie dogs retreat into their dens,

to hibernate until the beginning of Spring.

We watch with anxious anticipation

for the redemption of the creation,

marked by the month of Aviv,

when all mankind is made free.

Without anywhere to hide,

our sins are brought to light,

and like a prairie dog standing,

by his hole, in imitation of prayer,

we are called to ward off the doldrums

of our mind, and reconcile ourselves

to the Creator of all things peaceable

within His Kingdom.

dVerse prompt