Poems for the Jewish Calendar

For Shabbat

On Shabbat anger lines are suspended and estranged parents bless children together We are a village again – Raising each other’s children; Praising each other’s achievements; Laughing together We leave our baggage at the door – All of our petty and legitimately painful histories; All of our irritations, grievances and jealousies; We pretend For the

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Elul: Accept

Accept that this year probably won’t go as expected; that your family won’t suddenly be less dysfunctional; that true change – t’shuva requires hard work and not just best intentions. Accept that you cannot go back; that you don’t get a re-do; that you can only move forward and hope that you might do better

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Elul: Do

This year I’m a little resentful of Elul It shows up demanding spiritual discipline Drop everything! Begin T’shuva! it declares But I am not ready I am very, very not ready I am exhausted. Relaxing summers are for children and the retired (and I suppose, the wealthy) There are sermons to write and laundry to

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Elul: Breathe

Breathe in. A new beginning is on the horizon, fast approaching, ready or not. Breathe out. It is okay to be anxious. There is much that is unknown. It is okay to question: Will you make it through? Breathe in. Elul tells us it’s time to prepare; brace yourself; pace yourself; steady and ready yourself;

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