The Soul’s Light

“For with Thee is the fountain of life; in Thy light do we see light.”

– Ps. 36:10, JPS

From the earliest days of ancient history,

in the midst of the Garden, harmony reigned,

until the serpent’s poison entered the soul’s fissure,

shattering the unalloyed purity in the flame.

This deadly bite brought with it a tragic curse,

an admixture of good and evil

upon mankind’s hearth,

making all of Creation ill.

While battles rage across the ages,

the war within every human resides,

amongst the splintered ruins, we wage

a campaign against sinister tides.

No one is considered righteous,

because all within us is tainted;

to some degree, even amongst the pious,

who yearn to be free of this blight.

Seek we must, beyond the stars,

reaching upwards Heaven;

lacking the strength to go very far,

weighed down by bags of leaven.

Only the light from Above

can make clear the path,

when all else in man’s treasure trove,

fails to bring any lasting value.

A brighter day gleams in the future,

beyond what the mind can imagine,

when all mortal wounds will be sutured

by the healing power of the soul’s best friend.

© 2022 all rights reserved

dVerse prompt

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Serene Dream

The luminous glow

of light upon my latte,

as cinnamon and nutmeg

wafts into my nostrils,

as I inhale the steam,

rising from my latte.

Matcha and almond milk,

flavored with a hint of vanilla.

Umai, ocha ga daisuki desu.

—–

I’ve been drinking 5-7

cups of matcha each day,

while writing, reading, and exercising

in my small cave-like apartment,

akin to a monk’s cell,

and I imagine myself as

a Jewish contemplative,

in lieu of being able to live

in the sacred city of Tzfat.

—–

Otherwise, I picture myself

in seiza position on the wooden floor

in quiet contemplation of G-d.

I gravitate toward composing poetry,

reach into the depth of my innermost self,

as revealed to me by the light Above.

And, continually seek a tranquil mind,

If only for a moment,

upon the breeze in my dreams,

when everything else is serene.

dVerse prompt

Echos of the Past

First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a socialist.

Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

Martin Niemöller

punchcards filed, data compiled,

information stored, characteristics noted,

Jewish, Romani, Sinti, Slavic,

categorized as the Reich

spread across Europe.

today, echoes of the past,

more sophisticated technology;

new targeted groups, such as

white, heterosexual, conservative,

Christian, Republican, ad infinitum.

the everlasting revolution

against mankind.

dVerse prompt

Renewal on the Horizon

creative image by Lee Madgwick

Somewhere,

amidst the broken-down dreams

of a nation bereft of its heritage and pride,

amongst the scattered ruins of a once thriving

society of angels and men, seeking harmony,

lies the spark within, the light of renewal

that will bring home the downtrodden,

who still carry faith in their hearts,

and walk with the strides of righteousness,

alongside the saints of olden times,

who have not forgotten their G-d above,

nor their moral responsibilities below

on an earth that teeters and totters,

reels and shakes from the revolution

of an immense proportion

that spins the globe into chaos.

In the distant future,

when the angels fly overhead,

we will be lifted into the air,

only to be resettled in Paradise.

© 2022 all rights reserved

dVerse prompt

Nothing New

“There is nothing new under the sun.”

“What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.” – Ecclesiastes 1:9, ESV

All that has been done, can be undone by swift destruction. Yet, the most promising realities are formed from virtues made of gold. The refiner’s fire will test the soul of the faithful, as darkness takes its toll upon this world. And the powers that be will try to create something new – a promise of a manmade utopia. Transcendent visions await those who hold out for something beyond this mundane world that will arrive in due time, before the end. Look, to the Heavens.

Nothing new can be created out of the ashes of the old.”

Human nature remains the same across the ages; so, human errors, faults, and foibles will still be part of the equation. No amount of seeking our oppressors outside of ourselves, as if social justice can be bought upon the condemnation of others, without examining ourselves, will avail mankind for the sake of the common good. Rather, all totalitarian movements have begun this way, and end in dystopia. Those who claim to be Woke are asleep, lacking awareness of the true culprit inside each and every one of us – we must battle against our own negative inclinations, in order to transcend evil.

© 2022 all rights reserved

dVerse prompt

Gliding and Abiding

The haimishe coziness

of the evening settles,

upon the greenery of the park,

as the empyrean sky lifts up the stars –

reminders of G-d’s luminous heavens.

In Shomayim, the angels prepare

for their nightly round of singsong,

in honor of the Creator, Who glances

everywhere in one moment.

All is well until the dawn,

when the day begins again,

as promised; yet, without human foreknowledge

of what there is to encounter out there.

My kavannah is nurtured,

by the waxing and waning of the moon,

the ebb and flow of the Universe,

the wabi sabi of G-d’s creation,

as I greet every morning,

with my own song to the L-rd.

My derech, my raison d’etre, my ikigai

is written in the palms of my hand,

and the words of my prayers.

My focus and intent,

is to start the day

balanced, centered,

and in alignment

with my purpose.

© 2022 all rights reserved

dVerse prompt

Existential Limits

Like a sentinel,

the white rook sits in the corner,

defending the border territory.

Shall I give up that vantage point,

for the sake of a tighter defense?

Limited possibilities

teach me the virtue of humility,

while, reflecting in a parallel manner

upon my own existence,

I recognize my own limitations,

as a member of humankind.

And, this is what makes us human,

to know that we have free will,

within the framework of a finite being,

subject to nature and nurture,

circumstances and challenges,

all of which can be transcended

by effort, character, and merit.

© 2022 all rights reserved

dVerse prompt

Tears Descend

The links of time

are found in the air,

amidst the whispering wind,

and the evanescent dreams

of the angels, echoing our prayers.

These threads of gossamer

are as fragile as the memories

of our ancestors, drifting in the ether,

until they are purified of the hues

of grey, that cloud the minds

of their relatives on the earth.

Spare us from the flames of Gehenna,

in this life and the afterlife, L-rd;

that we may not be inclined

to repeat the sins of our ancestors,

nor, fail to improve ourselves,

while we have the opportunity,

for the dead perform no mitzvoth;

rather, they are only subject

to the heavenly court,

for what can no longer be undone.

May the upper waters

refresh our tired souls,

like the tears of Heaven,

falling upon the penitent.

dVerse prompt