Wednesday, December 24, 2014


How d’ya light the candles when you’re old-Hannukah-2014

I’m beginning to feel a lot like Shammai
as the years go by
all eight were lit the first day
not one like Hillel’s way

His students perhaps were older
returnees or those retired
Hillel’s young and bolder
to risk their brains are wired

He thoughtfully declared
At first lets start with eight
to live in the now he dared
Tomorrow may be too late

and whose version is real
of Hanukah’s true tale
History’s trial and ordeal
or legend  of oil so frail

the battle of the hero
the din of war hearts beating
pride and human ego
glory with triumph meeting

those who light one candle first
 have unlimited time
to grasp the explosive burst
of energy ‘s upward  climb

making history 
through clashing swords
hailing victory
by conquering hoards

adrenalin through pulsing veins
cries of forward making gains
the few, pious, unswerving
against the many, arrogant, undeserving

That’s how to celebrate,
at the end all the eight,
confident we’ll get there,
that’s Hillel’s path and prayer

but for me, 
its not the  clamor
nor mortal victory
not even Judah’s hammer
not enough spirituality

a tiny cruse of oil,
glowing in the dark
a refuge from all toil
a human’s holy spark

 not the noise and thunder
gushing guts and gore
 but a moment of quiet wonder
no room for sounds of war

so while Shammai’s the minority
 and Hillel reigns so strong
i thank him for sensitivity
to the weak who plod along.

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