Sunday, March 28, 2010

Pesach 5770 - Passover 2010

This is a poem by Chaim Bashevkin, in honor of the forthcoming Holiday. I hope it resonates with all of you the way it does for me...

A Place for Everyone

I walk the darkened streets
This night
Beneath the moonlight's glow
And in the homes
That I do pass
The children's faces show

To them there is no darkness
To them there's only light
For children of
Our Heritage
It is the Seder night

I walk by homes
Some children sit
And others start to squirm
Despite the winds
That shake the house
The old Jew sits there firm

I walk on old and
Sandy roads
Of a city once called Goshen
And see the blood
Upon the posts
And unsurpassed devotion

"Tonight, my children"
Says the man
Hashem will set us free
We'll see the word
So often heard
"Pakod pokadeti"

I travel in the
Holy Land
The Bais Hamikdosh proud
And thousands
Singing Hallel
Their voices sweet and loud

And then comes
And Romans with their hordes
They try to kill
Our Seder night
But all they have are swords

I pass the Yidden
Sent away
On ships now bound for Rome
And hear the fathers
Tell their sons
That one day we'll come home

I pass the caves
This Seder night
Singing Hallel as they hide
Eating matzoh
Living maror
Children at their side

I walk on the
Cobblestone streets
An ancient Persian night
And hear the
Hee She'amda loud
Despite the dread and fright

No food placed on
The dishes
No wine spilled on the table
Just fasting with emunah
And thoughts
"Hashem is able"

I pass the cellars
Dimly lit
A secret glow of candles
Outside the home
The rocks are thrown
By hate-filled wild vandals

And somehow in Ladino
Vehee She'amda
A rendition
That one day too
We know the Jew
Outlasts an Inquisition

I walk the paths
In Krakow
In Prague, in Samarkant
And see children
At Tzafun
asking what they want

I walk amongst
The barracks
Of death at Sobibor
Emaciated bodies sit
Huddled on the floor

"I know my
Days are numbered
Like digits on my arm
Yet somehow
On this Pesach night
I do not fear from harm"

And with a certain faith
He sings
Around some dried out crumbs
And faintly I do hear
The hope
As Dayeinu he hums

I trudge down toward
The path it still has snow
But warmth will fill
The winter chill
When to the son he'd show

"I know this
Is not matzoh
But I won't eat this bread
For one day
We'll be free from here
And eat matzoh instead"

And as I near my
Humble home
Cars lined up 'round my block
I see inside
Some fancy home
They're looking at the clock

"Let's move along
And leave Egypt
I'm hungry for the food"
And jokes under
Perched yarmulkahs
Display an attitude

And suddenly
My long walk home
4,000 years of Seder
Makes me wonder
What will be
Just a few more decades later

And as I open up
My door
For Eliyahu Hanovi
I know he's seen
All that I saw
Many years before me

He's seen Sedorim
In the caves
In cellars behind barbed wire
To all he comes
And leaves behind
A sense that does inspire

No matter what
The tragedy
Apathy or oppression
We won't forget
The heralded
And beloved expression

That one day all
The tears that flowed
From our tables to Shomayim
Will form the path
To lead us back
Leshana habah b'Yerushalayim

With blessings of peace and love to all of my readers out there, I wish us all a Chag Kosher V'Sameach!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Strong influences...

When even a whiff of an idea comes around that seems to have the slightest potential of positivity, the Evil Inclination gathers it's strength and attacks...

No sooner than my announcement of restarting the blog, and I was struck down with an insane sinus infection/strep throat blow-out. I was laid up this whole week!

Things are really busy right now as we make our final preparations for our flight to the Holy Land! The next time you hear from me, with God's help we will be in Eretz Yisroel. Hopefully, all of you will be joining me there this year!

A Chag kosher v'Sameach!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

New look, among other changes...

Okay, so many of you may have been confused when you first visited the site again.

As can be seen, I've done a little (perhaps more than a little) tweaking to the look and feel of the blog.

Rest assured, the spirit of the bog will remain more or less the same, but I felt that I needed to make a distinction between what came before and what will come. To some degree, it reflects the differences between my writing as a single Yeshiva boy, and new material presented through the eyes of a married man and father.

I hope that my dear readers will start coming back, and stay with me; God willing, I plan to have more Torah oriented postings as well.