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I write, mostly to keep my head from exploding. It threatens to do that a lot. My blog is the pixelated version of all the voices in my head. I tend to dive into what connects me to God, my community, my family and my doubt. I do a lot of searching, not as much finding. I’m good with that. I have learned, finally, to live comfortably in the gray. In the meantime, I wrestle with God, and my doubt and my joy.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

29 Elul 5773: Return

So, here's the part where I get a little wonky, a little out there. A little (if I may be so bold) vulnerable. Here's the part where I say: 

We are always at the Gate. 
We are always at Sinai. 
We are always redeemed.

We all-- every one of us-- walk a path with God. We may not recognize it or acknowledge it, but we do. There is beauty and pain and hope and despair in every one of those paths. Percentages may change. How long I choose to walk in despair may change and shift. It is the same for sorrow and wonder and joy. They are all there. It's what we carry and what we take away. It is our breath. Our souls. Our hope and sorrow. It is the Gate. It is Sinai. 

It is, ever and always, our redemption.

The beauty of Elul is the realization that I am there-- right there-- poised at the edge of everything-- always. I have dived and reflected, shined lights and prepared, to stand here-- right here-- with my heart open , eyes wide, filled with blessings and forgiveness, filled with my humanity and acceptance of yours. Ready, so very ready, to step through. To fit, to be, to become. 


And the thing I take away from this holy and sacred undertaking (entered into on a lark, carried out reluctantly, resentful of the discipline and formality, and doing it anyway) (and learning and growing and becoming as a result) -- another of those profound, transformative, life-altering truths that I find unlooked for and in odd places-- what I find is this: either every day is holy or no day is.  Today, I choose to live in a world where every day is holy. The gate is always open. I am always there. God is always there, ready to catch me, grab my hand and dance.

Tonight. Tomorrow. Yom Kippur. A week from next Thursday. Either every day is holy or no day is. The gates of repentance are always open. I am returned. I am redeemed. All I have to do is step through.

Thank you for being a part of my journey. Thank you for shining your lights in my darkness, for celebrating my joy and triumph, for teaching me the glory of silence the holiness of community. You brought your songs, your souls your lives and given me welcome/  I have been blessed beyond imagining. 

Shana tova umetukah-- may you have a sweet year, filled with wonder and joy, light and love, healing and wholeness.

Just in case you didn't see this the first time around-- I wrote this as I entered into Elul. It is no less true having walked through these days.

The Edge of Everything

We gathered,
all of us,
having walked this long road

There is so much I don't
remember of it:
and dust
and heat-cracked pavement.

And noise!
God, the noise--
It could tear you apart
and get inside your head
and all you want
is just a little piece of
A chance to
without feeling like
your hope
your fear
your love
All of it,
All of you
was caught
somewhere in your chest,
or maybe your throat,
And all you want is just one small
to be easy
and quiet.

So we gathered
at the edge,
the very edge of
Stopped in our noise
and our doubt
and fear.
at the edge
of love
and hunger:
At the edge of want,
to catch the light
of a thousand suns
and ten thousand moons
and absolute


Glinting of silver
and an infinity of
Subtle variations
of color
and depth,
in the  reflection of
all along the edges,
with light.

We gathered here,
at the edge,
bathed in
and bending light,
weary and
to leap. 
To dive into that pool
filled to overflowing
with love
and doubt
and hunger 
and hope,
that waiting pool of 

And filled now with sudden, shivery
and stars that reel
in mirrored waters.

And so I leap
With the light of
Of earth and sky,
all my doubt
my love
and longing.

And I remember
A road of dust and
Heat-cracked pavement
And I gather in the noise
And light
And breath-stopping fear,
Gather them in, to
Release them
In a single
Graceful sweep:
There is beauty in my pain.
There is more in
Letting go.

And so I breathe:
I am returned
To the edge of my


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