I wrote this poem at pesach last year, but I’m just sharing it now.
passover 2010 | 5770 פסח
i was born and made my way in the belly of the beast
it is here that my family lives, my community
i speak with fluency the oppressor’s tongue, most gracefully
painted white or brown when it’s convenient,
i have been blessed with the ability to travel between worlds–
i have been cursed with the necessity to travel between worlds
i am not a prophet to deliver my people from bondage.
i belong to so many peoples i could never even try.
i do not wander the desert–instead i traverse the streets when i find myself there.
wishing i were a giant, to kick down walls
instead, i am a child on my knees, madly tearing at the bricks
i endure because i do not bear the loneliness of a prophet
next year, next year, next year, next year
i refuse to wait for a free jerusalem to be handed to me from on high!
instead we must build it together–
unstoppable, like green shoots through the cracks,
and in a million years when it’s all overgrown
we will not sing the praises of a single prophet but the uplifting beauty of the joint struggle.