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ezra Apr 2019
I love comedy, I love to laugh and smile
I’d been looking forward to this night for a while
We were seeing a funny guy crack jokes and jests
there's absolutely no reason to be stressed
Except the venue was unconventional
Great location, the seating was plentiful
I didn’t realize where we were about to go
So as we walked up my footsteps began to slow
My curly hair blew through the air
And I uttered a little prayer
Because we were walking up to something I knew very well
I’d spent my childhood in one if you couldn’t tell
The place was a synagogue in downtown DC
And all of a sudden I felt I needed to flee
I walked inside and my heart started to race
Why couldn’t they have had this in a different place?
In a flash I’m back on October twenty-seventh
Where I watched the news to see that there had been eleven
Eleven  lives lost for practicing their faith saying a prayer
“Baruch atah adonai, please help me, I’m scared”
They couldn’t escape and now neither could I
Every part of me thought I was going to die
There! A man is holding a gun!
Come on people!  You have to run!
But it was his phone, my eyes were wrong
Don’t start to cry, please be strong
But I started to cry, no I started to sob
I held my head, it started to throb
I was scared out of my mind
I decided I had to resign
My mom took me back to the car
I needed to go somewhere really far
Then, I thought I would feel shame
But instead the anger came
I used to go to a synagogue and feel love and delight
But now all I feel is my fight or flight
They took my safe space away from me
They said I can no longer just be
I have to be scared because "Jews will not replace us”
I have to run because goyim want to chase us
There were always bomb threats during the sabbath time
There were picketers with their signs up, people throwing dimes
But I was a child, never afraid
No matter what, never dismayed
But now I see the casualties climb to terrible heights
And I haven’t been to a synagogue since that night
I used to be excited to learn different melodies of the sh’ma
And then the classic chanting of the v'ahavta
But now I’ll never feel safe again
I’ll always be looking towards the amen
Oseh shalom bimromav, Hu yaaseh shalom aleinu
Part of the mourner's kaddish I now give to you
I hope there’s a long time before its said about me
But it might be soon because I am not going to flea
The next bat mitzvah I’m invited to
Whoever it’s for, I don’t care who
I’ll be dancing and I’ll be squealing
The words to the black eyed peas’ “I’ve got a feeling”
I’ll always be afraid and  I’ll always be sad
I won’t stop myself from feeling mad
But maybe instead of counting sheep
I’ll let the mi chamocha lull me to sleep
My life will not belong to the people that want it gone
So to stick it to them… I’ll just have to live on
my feelings after the tree of life shooting :(
David Abraham Jan 2019
I remember my dreams of a holy place,
a library where I ran, just a little boy with other boys,
with a great stained glass window filling up the space
on the pointed ceiling above the sacred text
that left me perplexed
and mouthing a few syllables when I could understand,
and wishing to feel the soft cloth on my head,
over a short haircut that I didn't have.

I can't truly say if it was a dream,
but I remember walking outside into the desert with those little boys, feeling jealous of their kippahs,
and eventually we stopped at what I thought might be like a stream,
but was only a canal in the wasteland.
The tumbleweeds whispered and rattled,
but no snakes slid out of them with a tail that rattled quite the same.

I grew up though, far away now,
with the heavy weight of knowledge on my back
and the feeling of sweat on my brow.
I have heard a lot, and that soundless world where I spent all of my time looking and none of my time listening
is gone. I listen and I look now,
and I tell a girl about my observations
while she marvels and tells me what to do with them,
but there is nothing much to become
when despite my ambition
I hold myself back with the most unholy things.
2318 jan 10 2019
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