There is a Portal

For months I have been dying.
This has been good for me.

Two years ago
I left the forest
To live between Broadway and Main
In a city of views.
Mine is of a Chinese funeral home and crematorium,
And from just the right angle,
An illuminated cross
From the church streets behind.
It’s pretty, actually.
It lends perspective.
Portals open
In pandemics,
In geopolitics,
In a world left behind,
In the one opening up,
In the one that was always there.
We are barely strangers 
In this shimmering matrix of The One
Vibrating open
Through lives
Shut down. 
In a Zoom box of three,
During this time of altered time,
Having arrived late
To a blacked out face
At the bottom of my screen,
A man’s face says from above,
“My wife died this month.”
He arrives at niggunim.
“It’s not language,” he states.

“Ah, but it is,” I say, 
Unable to help myself.
“Although it has no words,
All who hear know, exactly, what it is saying.”
Primordial sound
Lived between the silence of Aleph
And Bet’s birth of the first word.
Maybe it was a niggun 
That taught God how to speak.
Babies and mothers,
Lovers and victims,
Celebrants and mourners,
Each a call,
A cry,
A long shout out,
Pure in rawness
A semiotics of sound
Delivered to a long silent, 
Yet ever listening God,
A God who knows 
Our every language:
A God who best teaches us 
What it is to create.
Share on facebook
Share on email

Ritualwell content is available for free thanks to the generous support of readers like you! Please help us continue to offer meaningful content with a donation today. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Rituals

Shop Ritualwell - Discover unique Judaica products

The Reconstructionist Network

Serving as central organization of the Reconstructionist movement

Training the next generation of groundbreaking rabbis

Modeling respectful conversations on pressing Jewish issues

Curating original, Jewish rituals, and convening Jewish creatives

Get the latest from Ritualwell

Subscribe for the latest rituals, online learning opportunities, and unique Judaica finds from our store.

The Reconstructionist Network