The 60 Bloggers project is a co-production of Jewlicious.com and the Let My People Sing Festival . It is published daily for 60 days to celebrate Israel’s 60 birthday. My contribution to this project is below. Chag Samayach!
I once curled up under a cliff in the machtesh
thousand star hotel
Awoken by the sound of wild gazelles
as they jostled for a choice spot by the spring
Ancestral womb land
Your children are spread out from
to toledo, taipei
But they never forget you, tongues cleaving,
a spoonful of peanut butter, right hands withering
left hands waved into the air swinging like they just don’t care,
feet dreaming of return.
You have nice rocks.
Our rock and our redeemer,
Your dust on our toes
A permanent condition
The axis mundi,
Umbilical cord to the other side
We sing halleluyahs into your cracks.
To sip a turkish coffee under the shade of your palms?
To sip a fresh squeezed orange juice on your cliffs that look out over the great sea?
To sip the cool mountain water cascading off your northern waterfalls?
We drink in your mother’s milk,
At pretentious cafes on streets named for city boy socialists turned farmers,
Plastic chairs in kibbutzim gone condo
On the porch eleven flights up overlooking the rarely open museum of the Diaspora,
On the Ottoman era tiled rooftops of your old cities,
We lift our glasses to you.
Tectonic shifting, trans syro african rifting
Each of your hills and valleys sing a new song unto the Lord on high.
May our dwellings on you be open tents
May we give thanks for your yearly gift of dates,
The goodness of the land.
And may we forever merit to not only have our
bones lie in your rocky soil
but to watch our toddlers crawl across your grassy places.
-Daniel S. Brenner