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Eternal Love

Elliot Toman

One Day I Wrote Her Name
Edmund Spenser

One day I wrote her name upon the strand,
But came the waves and washed it away:
Again I wrote it with a second hand,
But came the tide and made my pains his prey.
“Vain man,” said she, “that dost in vain essay
A mortal thing so to immortalize;
For I myself shall like to this decay,
And eke my name be wiped out likewise.”
“Not so,” quoth I; “let baser things devise
To lie in dust, but you shall live by fame;
My verse your virtues rare shall eternize,
And in the heavens write your glorious name:
Where, whenas Death shall all the world subdue,
Our love shall live, and later life renew.”

Wonder
Ibn Arabi

Wonder,
A garden among the flames!
My heart can take on any form:
A meadow for gazelles,
A cloister for monks,
For the idols, sacred ground,
Ka’ba for the circling pilgrim,
The tables of the Torah,
The scrolls of the Quran.
My creed is Love;
Wherever its caravan turns along the way,
That is my belief,
My faith.

Love Is Enough
William Morris

Love is enough: though the world be a-waning,
And the woods have no voice but the voice of complaining,
Though the skies be too dark for dim eyes to discover
The gold-cups and daisies fair blooming thereunder,
Though the hills be held shadows, and the sea a dark wonder,
And this day draw a veil over all deeds passed over,
Yet their hands shall not tremble, their feet shall not falter:
The void shall not weary, the fear shall not alter
These lips and these eyes of the loved and the lover.

I want to write different words for you
Nizar Qabbani

I want to write different words for you
To invent a language for you alone
To fit the size of your body
And the size of my love.

I want to travel away from the dictionary
And to leave my lips.
I am tired of my mouth
I want a different one
That can change
Into a cherry tree or a matchbox,
A mouth from which words can emerge
Like nymphs from the sea,
Like white chicks jumping from the magician’s hat.

Take all the books
That I read in my childhood,
Take all my school notebooks,
Take the chalk,
The pens,
And the blackboards,
But teach me a new word
To hang like an earring
On my lover’s ear.

Translation: Bassam Frangieh and Clementina Brown

The Morse Code of the Heart
Diane Ackerman

Poems arrive as meteorites.
Collecting them, I try my best to impart
impulses, the Morse code of the heart,
but I do not understand the vernacular
of fear that jostles me until art occurs,
or why knowing you from afar
spurs hours of working myself into the stars.
Well, I do know, but I fight its common sense:
I try to stabilize us through eloquence.
It’s an old story, better told than I tell,
how artists shape what hurts like hell
(usually love) into separate empires
of lust, tenderness, and lesser desires

Touched by An Angel
Maya Angelou

We, unaccustomed to courage
exiles from delight
live coiled in shells of loneliness
until love leaves its high holy temple
and comes into our sight
to liberate us into life.
Love arrives
and in its train come ecstasies
old memories of pleasure
ancient histories of pain.
Yet if we are bold,
love strikes away the chains of fear
from our souls.
We are weaned from our timidity
In the flush of love’s light
we dare be brave
And suddenly we see
that love costs all we are
and will ever be.
Yet it is only love
which sets us free.

Love and Friendship
Emily Bronte

Love is like the wild rose-briar,
Friendship like the holly-tree
The holly is dark when the rose-briar blooms
But which will bloom most constantly?
The wild-rose briar is sweet in the spring,
Its summer blossoms scent the air;
Yet wait till winter comes again
And who will call the wild-briar fair?
Then scorn the silly rose-wreath now
And deck thee with the holly’s sheen,
That when December blights thy brow
He may still leave thy garland green.

Eternal Love
Moshe Katz

While now my heart
May always stay empty

Though tears have dried
Leaving behind residue of loss

It is a void
A space that reverberates still

With memories eternal
Which remind and sustain

Love which even gone
Can never be forgotten

There is love
That changes your being

Writing itself so deeply
That it is entwined with your DNA

Though it might appear mortal
Something which lives and dies

The lives it touches
Know with quiet certainty

That its memory
Will echo in eternity

Meditations

Elliot Toman

The Old Testament, my spiritual text, is incredibly violent and perplexing. God communicates with rivers of blood and murdering angels. And yet, at the same time, there is nothing more secure, more anchoring, more evocative of peace, than the Torah. How can this be?

Here are my reflections.This is a series of Shabbat greetings, meditations on the Parsha, the weekly Torah reading. I start with images that capture the Torah passage. I splinter them, layer them, and finally reconcile them. I like to use layers of transparency. This is how we experience the world. If you focus one way, here is one truth. Look slightly deeper, here is another. It is hard to see, really see each one, all at once. But from another angle, all is in perfect accord. And here we are, wondering.  Samara Alpern

BESHALACH, 8
NOACH, 1
VA’EIRA, 5
YITRO, 5
YITRO, 8

Issue VI

Elliot Toman

The Endemic Jew Hatred of Political Islam

The Jewish community and the United States in general can no longer afford the luxury of willful blindness and complacency when it comes to the danger of political Islam and its role in governance.

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The Big Lie Comes to Colleyville: Fairy Tale vs. Storied Truth

The fight to defend the truth of the Jewish people is the fight for the possibility of truth itself. And the fight for truth is, in the end, always the defense of reality against those who would attempt to deny and overpower it.

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Hannah

I can feel my body weakening
The weariness accompanying every step
The stubbornness of my frozen joints
My body is failing me

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THE HOLOCAUST: ON MEMORY AND WITNESS

In our time, it is more important to be hard and relentless than genteel and unobtrusive lest history repeat itself. Today, January 27th, is the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz by Soviet troops in 1945. For this reason, this date was chosen as International Holocaust Remembrance Day. Several years ago, the World Jewish Congress…

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Lucy

I am from Poland
From the town of Przemyśl
Where my family has lived
For generations

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I Went To Synagogue Today

You won’t be a target sitting on your comfortable couch. But Jews have died sanctifying the Holy Name for more than two thousand years. For so many to hide from a virus with a low mortality rate seems an abandonment. 

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Reality Competition TV: The Real America

While the mainstream media is reporting on race riots, affirmative action, critical race theory, Black Lives Matter and white supremacy (and at the same time white fragility), the people on these reality competition shows represent the entire spectrum of races, economic situations, ethnic backgrounds, sexual orientations, and whatever other categories the progressives are trying to divide us by.

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A Texas Jew Looks On

An attack on one Jew is an attack on all of us; distinctions between religious practices and political leanings only deepen energy-sapping divisions. Terrorists don’t distinguish between Reform, Conservative, or Orthodox, and neither should we make fine distinctions in taking action in solidarity with Jews in danger.

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Rewarded with Paradise?

After Akram’s death was announced, the Blackburn Muslim Community Facebook page posted an announcement expressing the hope that: “May the Almighty forgive all his sins and bless him with the highest ranks of Paradise.” Keep in mind, Akram came from their community. He wasn’t just a terrorist to them; they knew him personally.

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Label CAIR a Hate Group

The same way that the Jewish Defense League (JDL), Westboro Baptist Church, and other such organizations have been labeled as terror groups or ostracized as bigoted organizations, so, too, should CAIR.

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To Life

Of all of the pro-abortion talking points, only one seems to be the most honest to their cause, and that is the argument of personhood; is the fetus a human being, does it have value, and is it worth protecting? These are the questions to which pro-abortion advocates tend to resoundingly answer “no.” This is…

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Star Trek’s Soul on Display at Los Angeles Exhibit

Does Star Trek have a Jewish soul—or at least a humanistic one? Seekers may find confirmation in a new museum show, Star Trek: Exploring New Worlds, at a Jewish institution, the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles. The show will run through February 20, 2022. While you will have to bring your own interpretation to…

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The Rebel’s Rage

Look quickly now the goal’s in sight,We need just dare and take the fight;Never weary of the weight,Don’t ever falter from the fate. Leave the world behind that can’t be borne,Not one more day of servant-thorn;The load of human-wretch has none,That could with force to have me done. And though alone am I to ease…

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Virtue and Vice

Today’s political elite can truly be called the new prohibitionists. To paraphrase writer Anne Hingston, they “Restrict first, discuss never.”

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Hallmarks of Tyranny (2)

Part 2: Brainwashing The ultimate goal of totalitarianism, Arendt says, is to dominate people from within. To keep them in a constant state of anxiety, with a moving narrative. A section of the UK population, and in other liberal democracies, experience other citizens as unreachable when trying to open a discussion about Covid-19 policy. They…

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The Clouds Gather

Those who admire socialism call themselves progressives. What a joke! The idea of a democratic socialistic society that they promote is outdated and, moreover, claims to its success has been disproven.

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Woke Terrorism

When it comes to Jews, apparently, it’s nearly impossible to draw the right conclusions about why so many of them end up dead.

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After Colleyville: Inconvenient truths

Anti-Semitic acts are becoming more frequent and more horrific. With all the politically correct talk against Islamophobia, the reality is that anti-Semitic acts in the United States and Canada outnumber anti-Islamic acts by a two to one margin.

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Finding Our Fury

The Union for Reform Judaism issued a statement after the Colleyville crisis ended. It was filled with relief and gratitude, but no rage.

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False Ending

It’s not a time to sit all cozy and reflect on how much work there is to be done amongst the interfaith ideologues. It’s not a time for Kumbaya Judaism.

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