There's something about September that screams "NEW" - whether we're preparing ourselves and our children for the new school year or we're gearing up for our High Holy Days (whether they seem to come "early" or "late"). Kids buy new school supplies and bring eager enthusiasm to blank pages filled with possibilities. Likewise, our Jewish calendar is coming to its end and we begin the month of Tishrei with bright eyes and clean slates.
As we begin a new school year - both secular and Jewish - let us pause to reflect on the infinite opportunities available to us for growth, struggle, and change. Let our innate curiosity flow unharnessed by uncertainty and fear. And let us acknowledge the sacredness of this particular moment in Jewish and secular time and space.
Thirty-Two: A Song of Endings and Beginnings
Let us sing of our completions, smooth, round,
Silvered voices to praise Your Name.
Every season holds starts and stops,
Years of trees and spirits and souls,
Days ripe with harmony and turning,
Circled, cycled, to order our lives.
Inside each completion,
We hear Your creation; Inside our creations,
We resound with Your voice.
Let us mold a new shape for our completions,
Fluid and longing, subtle limbs
That lead us onward to praise Your name.
Every season casts away its jagged edges,
Rubs away the torn moments
To rejoice in the realignment
Of old ways made straight.
Inside each refitting,
We renew again Your creation,
Pulling it taut against us,
A firm bound shield of Your affection.
Let us sing of our completions.
Your hand hovers, blesses,
Bids us move to new beginnings.
Your hand moves us forward,
Toward unimagined completions.
By Debbie Perlman, z"l
From "Flames to Heaven: New Psalms for Healing