Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Three Divine Words

If words can kill
If words can heal
If the pen is mightier still
Then they must be as real

If men are caged
By men enraged
If grudges old as time
Can spin a web without rhyme
or reason and ensnare
themselves in their lair..

And if this is the cruel face
Of a distorted human race
Then there must be a way free
A divine key

If you can find it within you
To find God within you
To undo this slimy web
To put down this gun to your head
And say..
Three short words..
That open the cage
set free the birds..
That turn the page..

Three words that allow
Allow you to

That flood you with the kind of peace
Only God can bestow..

just say them
and mean them..



i forgive you


Labels: ,

Monday, July 30, 2007

Dear Shadow,

Letter found at old horse gravesite behind the house..

Dear Shadow,
Dad told me all about you and so I decided to write you a little letter.

I know how it sucked being a horse back in your time..so I wanted to write to you and tell you about the Messianic age we’re living in..
You’re not going to believe how things have changed for us in the last 100 years.
Please see enclosed picture..
No..your eyes are not playing tricks on you...these days people are driving us around! No more hitching up a wagon full of people..now they hitch us up and drive us around.

Horses are kings these days. Little girls dream of us..and listen to this, a few months ago, a horse broke his leg and every newspaper carried the story on the front page. I heard he even got letters and flowers sent from all over the world..
Oh, how I wish you could’ve lived to see this Grandpa..


ps. Here's me with my head out the window while the old farmer huffs and puffs at the wheel...


Friday, July 27, 2007

Shhhh calm down...

The cars all packed..
Ready to go..
Perfect time
For Sruly to have a temper tantrum
The difficult child...
We wait..and wait..
Until we cant anymore..
Then the Totty..picks him up..
Writhing..and pushing..
Holds him tight..
shhhh calm down..
He whispers..
Out of control...
His face mangled puffy wet..angry..
Knocks his glasses off
Hoarse and harsh..
Father just squeezes tighter...
Breathing hard..
Suddenly..little ..Sruly
Loses energy..
Goes limp
Nuzzles into his Tottys neck..
Who kisses his forhead
And lays him down..



Wednesday, July 25, 2007

The New Lynchings...

In this past weeks Pirkei Avos we read the Mishna..
“Pray for the wellfare of the government, for without it we’d be swallowing each other up alive.”

What a concept.
I suppose the Mishna is adressing that inner evil that lies within every human being and only comes out when we can get away with it. That mob mentality that lurks in the shadows of our hearts. We all remember 3rd grade and how cruel kids can be. We’ve all seen images from war torn lands where there is no authority. The way people literally rip each other to shreds. But you don’t have to travel very far to see how true this is.
In the modern Western World where governments are stable and this impulse is for the most part held in check there is one area where you can see this so clearly. It’s something which is one of the worst transgressions for us and at the same time is a multi billion dollar industry. It is an industry that exists simply to hurt and malign other people. It’s as if the “they will swallow each other up alive” runs rampant up to the barrier that the government puts up.
I refer to, of course, the industry of Gossip. The man power, resources that goes into making it a well oiled machine and the profits it generates is mind boggling. There are no qualms nor is there a conscience in this sordid business and the mob mentality that it feeds is frightening.
A few months ago a young woman by the name of Paris Hilton had done something wrong. Now I don’t know much about her, I’ve never seen anything she played in nor have I heard her sing and she might be a bumbling idiot and an absolute moron. But I don’t for a minute believe that she’s evil or some murderer deserving of a public lynching. I don’t really feel bad for her per se, I’m just bemoaning the fact that we act the way we do.

So there I am at a newsstand with headlines that are simply difficult to believe that they were written up by anyone above 4th grade.

Cry baby..!
Paris Wants Her Mommy
Paris Crying..Post Exclusive Pics

Suddenly every person on the street eagerly snatching up the papers became this leering immature idiot, from the fancy suits to the young hipster. I was suddenly in 2nd grade again surrounded by taunting bullies shouting..Baby Baby.. I was suddenly in the streets of a European City where the “spolied rich” are scrubbing the streets while being spat at. I was drowning in the most base of human emotions. I was surrounded by an Uberefficient death camp of words and scentences and photos.
By a public mob hungry to take down the next guy and then the next...all within the boundaries of law, of course.

So pray for the welfare of the Government..
Pray well..
For without it we’d be eaten alive by..
Me and you..



Monday, July 23, 2007


Here I am thinking about Tisha B'Av and the fact that the true tragedy is not that a building was destroyed 2000 years ago but that the Shechina and Hashems presence is in exile. Its in exile within us.
My Neshama is a Chelek Elohai Mimaal, a piece of the Shechina and he's imprisoned in my body..that has it's own agenda..

I'm just picturing the press conference..
How mortifying it'll be..
when after a 2000 year intensive manhunt..spanning the entire universe..
They'll find the shechina bound and gagged..
in MY attic..



Friday, July 20, 2007

I can see!..

Sometimes its just so dark..
You really cant tell..if your eyes are open or closed...
Until you see a light..
In the dark of the night
You just cant tell how far or close..
Because when it’s really really dark..
You see lights..millions of miles away..
But its such a comfort..

That is Shabbos Chazon..



Tuesday, July 17, 2007

The Red Scarf

I sit here in my cold dark cell looking up at the peeling paint reflecting back at the events that led up to this point.

It all began a few months earlier on a dreary October morning. My life had been coasting along uneventfully up until then. I was a good boy as a youngster and fairly sheltered as most of my peers were, then I went out into the world, got an office, a secretary and slowly settled into a new pattern.
The morning began innocently enough. If I had any idea how my life would change I would’ve just stayed in bed forever.
My vivid imagination always has me expecting the unexpected but I was not prepared for the sight that greeted me when I shuffled into the kitchen.
Sitting at the wooden table was me, calmly eating a bowl of cheerios. I stood there frozen in my shorts and undershirt, mouth agape and white as a sheet. It’s funny how one can recognize his own mannerisms and I was anticipating his every motion. No, this wasn’t some long lost twin this was me without a doubt.
The me at the table did not acknowledge my presence at all. He slurped down the milk as I’m want to and threw the bowl into the sink without washing it, the slob..
After that he simply left out the narrow door of the kitchen, the screen door slamming with a sharp thud, wresting me out of my reverie.
“Hey wait!” I yelled and ran to the door but he was gone.
I sat there for awhile not noticing the sunrays baking my back, at a total loss.
Was I losing my mind? Who can I possiby tell?
I looked into the mirror and patted my cheeks just to make sure I was still here. I decided then that it was nothing but a mirage, a dream perhaps. I’d forget it about it and continue with my day.
The day went pretty smooth and I somehow managed to push out of my mind the mornings occurrence and run my company.
The first indication of trouble came just 2 days later when people at work were looking at me funny. I was either getting paranoid or the whole place was whispering about me and the whispers seemed to be getting louder and louder until I could not take it anymore. I walked over to the water cooler where Mark was standing and cornered him, “alright what’s going on here?” I whispered menacingly. “As if you don’t know”, he replied with a smirk. “No I don’t” I shouted as half the office turned to see what the commotion was about.
I walked back to my desk feeling constricted and uncomfortable.
I looked around and spotted Jerry the accountant at his desk surveying the office from behind his thick plastic glasses. I immediately Imed him. “Hey Jerry..what’s going on?” What he answered made my stomach drop. Basically I had been out last night getting drunk, going to clubs and acting very uncharacteristicly. I was mortified.
Things would only get worse.
That night I decided to go out and track down my double and get to the bottom of this. I walked around peeking into clubs and bars until I was exhausted and headed home.
I came home to find 2 police officers at the door. “Sir can we speak with you a moment?”. “Sure”, I answered uneasily, “come in”.
The older officer walked in slowly his grey eyes scanning every inch of my living room.
He stopped at the coffee table, looked up at me from under his crooked cap and asked “where were you 11am this morning?”
I thought for a moment and then anwered..”I was at work sir..why do you ask?”
The junior officer a hispanic fellow named Vargas dropped a packet of surveillance pictures onto the table. I slowly lifted them, eyes intent and felt my knees give out under me. I collapsed onto the couch..”officer this man looks just iike me.., but I have a whole office full of alibis attesting to my whereabouts, and besides I’d never ever shoplift”.
After handing them a list of my co-workers phone numbers I walked them to the door and closed it behind them. I sat down poured myself a drink and fell asleep in my clothes.
The next morning I went to work and things seemed to be back to normal except for Lisa my secretary who seemed to be dreamily staring at me all day. At 1pm she got up, walked past my desk and dropped a small sticky note onto my desk that read “recover yet, stud?”.
I had to get out of here. I grabbed my jacket and raced home. My heart was racing now and I needed some kind of plan. That night I decided to go out and look for him again.

The streets were full of the usual late night revelers and I felt very uncomfortable, but I kept on looking. I rounded a corner and caught a glimpse down the block of myself rounding the next corner. I started running with total disregard to the people on the street who didn’t seem to care anyhow in their inebriated state. I actually grabbed someone and asked breathlessly..”hey did you see which direction I went?”
I returned home empty, alone and utterly exhausted.

The next morning I picked up the local paper and saw the headline “Local bank robbed”. Under that was a fuzzy surveillance picture of the perpetrator and there he was again. Luckily he was wearing a mask but I was able to recognize his physique.
I was thorougly frustrated and was about to pour myself another drink when I threw the glass across the room, the sound of the shattering soothing my nerves for a second.
Suddenly there was a frantic knocking at the door. I peeked through the peep hole and backed away..
My own voice rang out “come on I know you’re in there..please open up..”
I was silent..trying to quiet my thumping heart. Oh no, I suddenly realized the door was not locked as the knob turned slowly. The door opened and he tiptoed in closing the door behind himself. I was backing up slowly into the kitchen. He turned to me and started pleading “Hey you have to help me..I’m hungry, tired and the cops are looking for me”. He was wearing a simple black coat and a bright red scarf, not something I would ever wear. I reached my hand to the left out of his sight and groped around for a knife on the counter. I wanted to kill him and be done with this nightmare but I couldn’t do it. I actually felt some pity for him and whispered hoarsely “sure, come have something to eat”. Watching him was like an out of body experience. The overall mannerism was exactly me. There was, however, a cockiness about him that I didn’t recognize and found threatening. I watched him eat hungrily in silence. This moment was so strange it brought awkwardness to a whole new level. I coughed and then I asked, “where did you come from?” He started laughing and nearly choked on his food. “Where did I come from? I’m you..you silly man”. He then proceeded to brag about his exploits, things I would never dream of doing. I found myself fascinated and revolted all at once.
We shared a few drinks and fell asleep on the couch..
The next thing I remember, it’s 4:00am and the room is a mess. Empty bottles and leftover food strewn about the dimly lit room. I sat there looking at myself sleep so fitfully and actually felt bad for him for a moment. I stood unsteadily went to the kitchen, took that black kitchen knife in my hand and stabbed him 3 times in the heart. He slumped to the floor without ever having woken up. I then stood erect, fixed my red scarf and calmly walked out the door.


Labels: ,

I hate the way I am...

I hate..
That I’m not aggressive..
I hate..that I wish I was..
I hate that I procrastinate..
I hate not accomplishing..
I hate that I feel the need to..
I love that theres always a tomorrow
I hate that one day there won’t be..


Labels: ,

Sunday, July 15, 2007

reverse Ahavas Yisroel

There was one Aliya left...
2 possibles candidates
One “sheiner yid”..
You know the type..
In the back..
No hat..
Perhaps a BT..
My gut was to go with the one in the back..
My Rav perplexed...
Wanted to know why
I wasn’t giving the first guy..
I was about to tell him..
I’ve been in the real world
Long enough..
To be impressed..
When I realized..
I’m just as guilty..
As he..



Wednesday, July 11, 2007

it's about Time


That elusive dimension that makes life as we know it possible.

Theologans, philosophers, thinkers and sceintists have for thousands of years tried to unlock the secrets of time.

I recently heard a fascinating episode of radiolab devoted to Time. If you have a minute or 47 you can hear it here. This post is loosely based on my impressions while listening.

In my previous Subway poem I contrast the passage of time as seen from the eyes of 2 perspectives moving at different speeds, the passenger hurrying to work, and the musician spending the day there playing his music.
Time, as Einstein shows in his theory of relativity is not a fixed universal tempo as previously thought. It is rather an elastic concept that can be stretched or shortened based on the subjects perpective.
It’s fascinating to note how almost everything in this world has some sort of built in meter that sets its tempo. In living things it might be the beating heart, in stationary objects, the rate of erosion and in a music piece the tempo of the melody. We experience time based on this constant and it can thus be sped up or slowed down accordingly by temporarily entering another items time frame and tempo. For instance if you go to the beach, close your eyes and listen and let yourself be immersed in the sea, in the crashing waves, you tap into that new tempo and time slows accordingly.
In Torah Hashkafa we know that time only exists for us to function in. It’s one of the dimensions of our physical arena along with space. But each moment does exist, we just cannot understand in what fashion that may be because we can only grasp the physical world as we know it. So time is relative indeed. The Michtav MeiEliyahu writes that our Souls are revealed to us section by section to work on. Each section is a moment of time.
Imagine a moment stretched out to 10 or 20 times its legth to disect and analyze.
I was fascinated by this performance given in San Fransisco of Beethovens iconic 9th Symphony.
However, instead of it lasting the intended 60 minutes or so, it has been stretched to last 24 hours. So you’re listening to this familiar piece of music and you’re in an entirely different dimenion of time. I found it to be eerily beautiful and a small peek into this concept.
Here is the first 10 minutes of the piece..

(Here's the site..)

If you listened to the entire NPR clip you heard how time has evolved over the years. The way time was viewed just 200 years ago is very different to the way we view it today. This dramatic shift has had some interesting consequences and has raised some questions I’ve often wondered about.
The clock is a relatively new invention and the concept of everyone having the same time wasn't widespread until the railroad came rumbling through and the need for a standard timetable arose. Imagine yourself back on a farm in 1800. Time was measured by tasks. Dawn was time to wake up. There was time to feed the chickens, time to eat lunch and time to bring in the harvest. And when the sun went down it was time for bed. Some of the more interesting clocks mentioned are the spice clock (where every hour another spice is released and even in middle of the night you can taste what time it is), the bird clock (where different birds by nature chirp differently at different tmes of the day) and others. Time was inexorably linked to things happening. Today the clock ticks on a time based time regardless of tasks or function. The universal imaginary clock keeps marching on and on. Think about how much easier it is to be lazy today. You're not wasting time if time is something far removed from the sphere of action.

I sometimes wonder about our alloted time in this world.

Is it based on time?
When we spend a certain amount of time we expire?

Or is it task based?
When we accomplish a certain amount or conversely, when we miss a certain amount of opportunties we are taken away?

Is it a football game, where the game is over after 60 minutes?

Or is it a baseball game where the game doesn’t end until 54 or 51 outs are recorded with a decisive score, no matter how long or short it takes?

hmm keep thinking...


Labels: ,

Monday, July 09, 2007

subway LIFE

continuing with the New York theme..Picture taken by me..
My tag is 2 posts down.

The platform fills in the blink of an eye
Swarming masses exiting doors...
Descending stairs..
They take their places
This one...right at the edge
That girl ..behind the pole
A crowd gathers to watch....
Some out of boredom
Others to enjoy
The strains of a violin
The high pitched ebb and flow
Of the Celtic tones..drawn from the bow
Delicately pulled by the coal black fingers
Of the coal black violinist with his fixed white smile
White glint in his eye..and white hat on a tilt

The businessman in the sharp blue suit
Locks eyes..
With the girl in the faded jeans..
Forging connection..
connection Forging?

Serenaded by the surreal tones of the violin

While the girl next to him fearfully
Eyes everyone in her sight

One fellow anxiously looks
Into the dark void
Waiting..looking for something
A train..?

for him
the train rumbles in
terrifyingly loud

Another contently reads the art
On the walls
Listens to the music

for he
barely notices
the train has come..
to whisk him away

Look around...
Within 15 minutes
Everyone here now will be gone
This platform will be full
With an entirely new cast of characters
As people come and go...to their destinations
Trains rumble by..
New passersby..New pass you bys
New lovers ..New haters

Witness to it all
The strains of the high pitched
Violin and the coal black fingers..
White smile and white hat on a tilt..
The look in his eye tells thousands of tales
As a new crop of people fill his space waiting
For the train that will take them away..
From his world..


Labels: ,

Thursday, July 05, 2007

rivers of flesh and machine

My re-posted tag is one below this one...scroll down

Ebb n flow
Traffic flo
Metal n flesh
Strange synergy
Nervous energy
Mass death
Last breath
Just a small push
Of pedal
Street dances
Alternate advances
Flesh flowing
Through gaps growing

get me outta here



Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Tagged Again

Originally posted back in 12/06 when the tag only required 6 things..
Thanks Jewmaican..Mrs Jude..Behind a smile and whoever else tagged me this time around..

Thanks Sara and Anonym00kie for this..

I've been trying all week to narrow this list down to 6..lol

1. I cannot wear a watch..necktie..anything tight on me. It drives me nuts.

2. I have no sense of direction. nada.. I can get lost on the same road 100 times..

3. I chew gum all day... I get very nervous when theres no spearmint in my mouth..

4. I havent vomited since I was 7 years old.

5. I have severe bibliophobia. I must have reading materials in the following situations.
a. in the bathroom. if theres nothing to read I'll grab anything..including hair dryer warranties..lol
b. when I'm eating by myself..
c. on a bus or plane...I bring along enough to read for a week.

6. When I get nervous I pick up the couch and throw it through the window..

ok..ok I made up that last one..

Ok I tag President Ahmedinejad (yes..he actually has a blog). This should be fun.


Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Happy 4th...

Cool summer evening...
Laid out on a greal lawn
Free outdoor music..
Fireflies dancing
Fireworks filling the black

The rockets red glare
The bombs bursting in air
Gave proof through the night
That our flag was still there..

..o’er the land of the brave
and the home of the free..

I look around at the faces
Illuminated by the fireworks
And the pale full moon

A sea of diversity..
Proud to be part of something..
Glad to be free...and secure..

People say..Don’t feel so comfortable here..
Jews felt like Germans in Germany and look what happened..

But I really don’t think you can compare..
I look around again..and its obvious
America is so different..

No matter how hard a Jew thinks he’s German..the bottom line is..his anscenstors were not Aryan nor descendents of the Huns and Franks..

No my anscestors weren’t American..but neither was the next one over..and the one next to him..and the one to my other side..

United by a common bond..
A love of freedom..
And a world of opportunity..

Thank you America?
Who exactly is America that we thank?
America is us..
It’s me and you...
It seems a bit absurd thanking a government by the people for the people...

But if it weren’t for our Armed Forces..none of this would be relevent..
Thank you..brave men and women of our armed forces..for giving us the security that make this world of opportunity blossom..



Monday, July 02, 2007

Only me...

...so I'm sittin there at the bank drive thru
the other day..
waiting for that thing to spit up my receipt..
when after a few seconds of whirring and rumbling..
a bowling ball comes up instead..

that ever happen to you?


Labels: ,