Kaddish: Love Language

a collage with the words of the Kaddish and pastel watercolors

The words are so familiar.
I know them all.
But I don’t want them to roll off my tongue easily.
I want to utter each bewildering syllable
In all its intricacy.
As if dad was listening.
And I want to feel the breath
That comes in between. 

Is like a colossal timeless magnet
Beckoning the heartbroken.
Inviting them to find comfort within its shield.
“Attach yourself to me,” it says,
“And you will be sheltered among generations of souls
Who have found connection
In my cadence.
In the rhythm of my practice.” 

Is like a thread
Weaving through memories
And bringing you close.
Sitting in my own space,
And yet in the company of community
I take time to remember.
To close my eyes and listen to my heart
Or to open them and look at photos of your face.
To tune my ears to the birds
Or to the silence.
And to breathe
As if I could breathe for you. 

Now, your breath is within me.
And Kaddish is like a love letter. 
Words said aloud 
But felt privately, deep inside. 
Love language.


Art created by the poet

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