I look at the photo, me holding my granddaughter. Between us we are 57 years old, she has just celebrated her first birthday. In the photograph we are both laughing hysterically, in the photo we are both young children.
For on this day there is no peace, for on this day some are laid to rest, for on this day others shed endless tears, for on this day many are wringing hands, for on this day many offer hollow words, for on this day they know they should act for on this day they know they will not, for on this day we think about tomorrow, for on this day we think of those without tomorrows, for on this day the sun did rise, for on this day the earth did rotate, for on this day God was elsewhere, for on this day we were all too human.
In memory of the lives lost and changed forever at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
You may seek to follow the path of the dove, for a fool knows many roads. You may wrap yourself in fine linen, an infant wears only his skin and knows this moment is already gone.
Think long before you speak of how to walk along the path, of where it leads. The baby says nothing, will not speak of where he has been, where he is going, for to him there is only here, and silence is descriptive enough.
It wasn’t so much that it slipped away this morning, I’ve come to expect that, and I know there is absolutely nothing I could do to stop it. It wasn’t even that I couldn’t recall what it was precisely that was gone, for that is the nature of departure and longing. It was more that I now cannot determine what it was the replaced it, and my mind is supposed to be engaged in a net zero sum memory game, for that is what gives me hope for tomorrow.
Once I was six foot four with long blond hair that would have made Fabio jealous, but sadly I woke up. Now in the mirror I am a balding five foot six, middle aged man who wants only to return to the me of my dreams.
The mountains rise, bluer blacker than real against a faded sky. The ancestors have fled these hills, no orange eyes stare out of the night, no voices of the trickster take up chorus against the stars.
My grandmother lapsed into Yiddish only on special occasions “where other words won’t fit” she said, where there is no English to describe the indescribable, blessed be He, but we knew that it was merely a convenient way to keep us out of the conversation, while they clucked. Mah Johng is a game that can only be played in Yiddish, she said, to hell with thousands of years of Chinese history.
She remembers the Golem she met him once on Fourteenth Street when she still had the liquor store. She thought it strange that he wanted gin and not Slivovitz but Golem can be strange under the right circumstances, and he did speak Yiddish.