Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Earth Etude for Elul 5 - Early

by De Fischler Herman

Leaves yellow, wither, and fall

Acorns drop, clacking on the street

It is only the middle of August

The creek shrinks, stalls, and stagnates 

Leaves floating, halt, holding in place 

We wave the flag for Independence Day 

Air swells, heats, and suspends

Strawberries redden, picking time already

And it’s not yet June

Azaleas bloom and leaves unfurl 

Long before Mother's Day 

Cherry trees blossom, the river retreats

And April’s parade is weeks away 

March winds don't blow 

February's snow pays no visit 

January's weather brings forth no complaint 

Hineni—Here I am

In the land of riches 







Humans regard Early as a virtue 

But Nature begs to differ

Early is okay every so often

But not as a steady diet

Too much Early

And Nature, 

Like Jacob wrestling the angel, 

Struggles for its very survival

Time speeds 

Earth chokes 

Land broils 

Ice caps melt 

Whales beach 

Oceans rise 

Rivers swell 

Cities flood 

Creatures thirst 

And trees weep 

Mother Earth and Father Time Yearn for TLC from us, 

Their bipedal offspring 

It’s Time to wake up, you sleepy heads! 

Oh, brothers and sisters, 

Can’t you see?

Our parents, and all planetary life, crave 




And hazanah—nourishment 

Not only from one another 

But from us two-legged children 

Who've been playing way too roughly 

Long past our bedtime

We've trampled on this Cadillac of playgrounds

(This amazing gift from the Holy One of Blessing, 

Who has entrusted it to our care)

We’ve been ignoring our Mother's call to return home Early

So we can have Time to get ready 

For Shabbos 

It’s high Time we see that menucha--rest is in order

We need to return to the family table 

With our precious parents and each other, 

Enjoy the fresh fruits of the local harvest, 

And repair our wounded senses

Only then may we all reconnect with the One

Source of Life

Creator of the Universe

Rabbinic Pastor De Fischler Herman, ordained by the ALEPH Ordination Program (AOP), served as hospice chaplain until retiring in 2019. She serves AOP students as a Director of Study (DOS) and is a climate activist, writer, artist, gardener, avid bicyclist, and food distribution volunteer in her community. De lives in Takoma Park, Maryland with her husband and cat. 

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