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Tag Archives: poetry

Noah — Genesis 6:9-11:32

“Who is like you Who could reach you Who has seen Who has been …When you ride a cherub And glide on the wind And wander through thunder And move within storms Making your way through the waters…“ The liturgical poet Yannai here imagines the divine as controlling the universe, “from the sky to the […] http://bethsholomsf.org/noah-genesis-69-1132-3/ Continue Reading...

Re’eh — Deuteronomy 11:26 – 16:17

American naturalist-poet Ralph Waldo Emerson once remarked, “Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God’s handwriting.“ Emerson’s 1836 essay, Nature, expresses the belief that everything in our world – even a drop of dew – is a microcosm of the universe. This transcendentalist notion is not foreign to Judaism, especially its […] http://bethsholomsf.org/reeh-deuteronomy-1126-1617-2/ Continue Reading...

Behar / Bechukotai – Leviticus 25:1 – 27:34

“Sowing the seed, my hand is one with the earth. …Hungry and trusting, my mind is one with the earth. Eating the fruit, my body is one with the earth.“ Wendell Berry’s poem “Prayers and Sayings of the Mad Farmer” asks us to consider how the farmer is like the farm. Similarly, the strong language […] http://bethsholomsf.org/behar-bechukotai-leviticus-251-2734/ Continue Reading...

Behar — Leviticus 25:1 – 26:2

Cycles are enticing, entrancing, and mesmerizing. The American poet Adrienne Rich (1929-2012) once remarked: “We might possess every technological resource… but if our language is inadequate, our vision remains formless, our thinking and feeling are still running in the old cycles, our process may be ‘revolutionary’ but not transformative.“ The seven transformative cycles that appear […] http://bethsholomsf.org/behar-leviticus-251-262/ Continue Reading...

Tazria — Leviticus 12:1 – 13:59

The renowned Mexican poet Octavio Paz (1914-1998) once observed: “Abstract painting seeks to be a pure pictorial language, and thus attempts to escape the essential impurity of all languages: the recourse to signs or forms that have meanings shared by everyone.“ Nowhere is this “essential impurity of all languages” more evident than when reading about […] http://bethsholomsf.org/tazria-leviticus-121-1359/ Continue Reading...

Kezayit (An Olive’s Worth): Man As Technicolor Dreamcoat

In the wake of David Bowie‘s passing, we’re sharing another Kezayit feature here. What’s this Kezayit thing? Read here. +++++ On Sunday, January 10, the world lost a great pop culture trendsetter and zelig, David Bowie (1947-2016). Bowie, born David Robert Jones in South London, wasn’t Jewish, but he was among the first celebrities to […] http://bethsholomsf.org/kezayit-an-olives-worth-man-as-technicolor-dreamcoat/ Continue Reading...