Monday, February 23, 2015

Over This

I am so over this
The back and forth
Up and down
Can't decide
Make up my mind
Do I want you to be mine
More than I want to be fine
To be the portrait
Of what is expected
Oh, to be completely
Utterly rejected
A red 'A'
On my shirt
But would that hurt
More than denying the truth
Of what I really want
So we tease
We taunt
We flaunt
And we fake
We almost f...ell
But oh well
Someone had to be the grown up
Own up
To the childish whims
And wicked ways
That had us played
If I laid
To the desires
What liars
We would be
What liars we have become
But it is not the lies that destroy us
It is when we become numb
And can no longer decipher the truth
Within the prize
And so we take
The bad
The ugly
The deplorable
And make it acceptable
If only to feel something
Anything
Other than the crushing reality
That this was a game all along
And we have lost.
Everything.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Joy in Passing

I think it is very appropriate that my grandfather passed away just as the month of Adar began. Although he had been sick for sometime with a variety of ailments, he approached each day with happiness. Whenever I spoke with him, he always said, "hanging in there.. Taking it one day at a time," because everyday is a blessing and he recognized the goodness in each day. It is hard to find a place of understanding between such an incredible loss and the timing of such a loss. As Adar begins we are supposed to increase our simcha. We recognize that, like in Shushan, GD works behind the scenes. His ways are mysterious, but magical and majestic. Every occurrence in life was carefully planned. And so I must analyze the passing of my grandfather with it's time in the Jewish calendar. It isn't random. There was clearly a reason for it and I believe It has to do with The way my grandfather lived his life. He had set a goal around when he started to worsen that he would make it to my cousin's bar mitzva, his oldest grandson. He was determined to be there and he lived everyday with that goal in mind. His perseverance was really a lesson for me. He wanted it. He lived for it. And he lived happily for it. I could hear his smile in the phone when I called. Although he was probably in a lot of pain, he never let It detract from the fact that he was alive, he was living, and that is a beautiful thing.

If there is one thing I can learn from my grandfather's passing coinciding with the onset of the month of Adar, it is that life is meant to be lived with joy, no matter the circumstances or pain.

Baruch Dayan HaEmes.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

For the First Time in Forever... and It's Too Good to Be True

He likes me. He really likes me.
But he is several states away.
And several life stages behind.
But for once
FOR ONCE
He isn't a phony
A jerk
A liar
A creep
Or cruel
He actually he cares
He actually wants to try
To make this work
But I know
That with several states between us
And several life stages to catch up on
This isn't going anywhere
Except a straight trip
To the hills of heartache
Where I will roll into
A pit of despair
Until the next one comes along
And the games start again...

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Have You Ever...

Looked at your life
And been shocked
By what you saw
The written word
And stone and law
Things you can't change
Choices that have been made
I didn't choose this path
The life chose me
I couldn't be
Anywhere but here
This is what I love
What I hate
But it feels so great
To know
It's mine
I can
Turn the page
Mature with age
Or act my shoe size
My lies
My life
Maybe it's wrong
It feels right
To stay up at night
Talking to you
Dreaming of a tomorrow
That's more colorful
Than yesterday
Let's just get away
And bring this life
With.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

50 Shades of Wrong

I haven't read the book. I haven't seen the movie. But, I have read what others who have read the book and seen the movie had to say... and it seems pretty awful.
A controlling, abusive, sexually manipulative lover is not romantic. It's just that. Controlling. Abuse. Manipulation. Those things don't show up in the recipe for love. It's so sad that this is what the world thinks love is about.
When I was in high school (and beyond), the craze was Twilight. I read them all (I'll admit it) I remember that sickly, nauseating feeling of being sucked in (pun intended), thinking that THIS was true love and romance- the way he didn't let her go anywhere without him knowing, the way she was willing to die to live with him forever... and for what? I never saw any indication that he was a worthy partner except for the fact that he sparkled. Get real.
But to be loved... to be adored... to be treated with respect and dignity? That's what a relationship is all about. That's the feeling, the connection we should crave. Not sadistic, masochistic, self indulgent abuse. I won't see the movie. I won't read the book. The world has distorted what love is all about and I won't willingly sacrifice my dreams of a happy and healthy marriage for a bandwagon craze that will destroy the fibers of morality.


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

From miles away
I feel your hand
On my heart
Holding me
Through the dark times
Dancing with me
Through the light times
And running
Through the difficult times
Hand in hand
The world isn't quite so hard
To face
But it's your face
That I miss so much
And the miles between
Are stretching even further
Every day
That I feel closer to you
Could I go mad
From this space
That you both
Fill and empty
Simultaneously
Reminding me
That I am loved
And that I am alone

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Fear

I trust you to do
No harm is all you do to
Me, I'm full of fear

Run

Run to fill hunger
Eat to fuel the run to face
The force that moves me

Word

I want every word
To mean more than one before
My pen is not still 

Why the Haikus?

I have been exploring other patterns of writing that are outside of my norm... haikus are the trend of the week for me.
So bear with me while I go haiku on you
(Gezuntheit)

I need sleep.

Monday, February 2, 2015

My Favorite Flavor of Heart

I seem to have misplaced
My heart
Or perhaps
I was too generous
In how much I gave away
Like my favorite flavor ice cream
I only wanted you to have a taste
But instead I gave you
The entire container
And thank-you-very-much,
I would like it back now
And the spoon as well
Oh, you ate it all?
There is nothing left?
That is how I feel
About my heart
Like I gave too much away
To too many people
And now that I realize
How much I am missing it
It is already being used
By someone else
For selfish purposes
Or even for truly admirable reasons
But I am feeling
Like there is a hole
Where my heart should be
So thank you very much
I'd like it back now.
Please
And a cherry on top
If you would be so kind...

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Flicker

I read of light
The lingering promise
That wouldn't fade
Even when everything else
Had been torn away
A little bit of light
Will always shine through the darkness
Like the moon in the sky
Or a candle in a blackout
Darkness
Can be dispelled
In a moment
And you
Were that flame
For me.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Haiku III

There was dusk and dawn
Light fading and flourishing
It is never gone

Haiku II

When I lost my light
I reached for you to show me
The light within me

Haiku

Let me feel it all
Then bottle it up and never
Feel that way again

Monday, January 19, 2015

What Do I Believe?

It is easy to believe
The world has gone insane
The headlines prove it
Another terrorist hit
An illness has struck
We have become stuck
In despair
Because from where
Will salvation come
We look to the mountains
Those massive problems
Catastrophes
And think
There is no way to go on
But every mountain
Has a summit
And if you want it
You can read the top
And see from above
How every road leads home
And every calamity
Has a remedy
But we are still stuck
Climbing
But through this journey
Of darkness
Madness
Insanity
I believe
That we will receive
The redeemer
At the top
We never stopped
Praying
And waiting
For his return
Despite the pain
The destruction
Terror
We will hold on
To what we believe
And what I believe in

Thursday, January 1, 2015

A Scattered Heart

There is a piece of me
Scattered in every place
I left a shred of my heart
Where I shared my heart
With strangers
The places
That led me to danger
Because an open heart
Can be a dangerous thing
But with you
Who took without asking
And gave more than I could ever imagine
You showed me
How true love is a priceless thing
And that is it something to share with the world
So across the sea
And up a mountain
I let you have
A part of me
I split my heart
And locked you deep inside
Beneath the layers of questions
And unconditional caring
There you will find
The places
I call home
With the people
I call family.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

The Shidduch Crisis... Correct Me If I'm Wrong

Earlier this year, I went to an event organized by some ladies in my community. It was called "Meet the Shadchan" and was meant to give the single girls in my community an opportunity to meet out-of-town shadchanim, as well as local shadchanim. Being naive and optimistic, I went. I dressed up, printed out my resume and picture  (only for the Shadchan's eyes, of course) and headed off to meet the shadchan (read: meat market). It was kind of fun in a way-- seeing all my friends in one night. Obviously so, we were all feeling uncomfortable and vulnerable. I met with two out of town shadchanim and a few locals. I left feeling excited because someone had also mentioned my name in association with a local boy. So yea, I felt great. And ten months later, they arranged a second event. In the time between the first and second event, I did not hear from a single shadchan. Not. One. Single. Shadchan. I sent emails with updated resumes and pictures. I did what I was supposed to do and I did not hear anything. Not "Oh, thanks for getting in touch" or "we are thinking of you." NOTHING. So when this second event rolled around I was completely less than enthusiastic. I have definitely changed in ten months. My perspectives on the shidduch system have become a little darker, a little less optimistic. Now, I can't complain. I am young compared to others. I am not at the point of desperation or thinking of "settling." But I am upset.
So I didn't want to go. But, after some convincing, I paid my dues, and went to the event. It was just as awful. And it was worse because this time I could see how flawed it was. Tens of girls were lined up, looking DROP DEAD GORGEOUS in Shabbos clothes, heels, makeup and jewelry to the nines. To meet the SHADCHAN! It felt like something straight out Mulan... off to meet the matchmaker, minus the synchronized song and dance. And it just felt wrong. I couldn't muster the enthusiasm to put on a good show. I was chewing gum, wearing my double-sided studs, no heels and did not take off my coat. I was told off by one of the event planners to throw out my gum. I left on my coat. I met with one out of town shadchan who hardly looked at me and one other Rav who seemed genuinely interested. But so far, no calls, no email.s
Now why do I think this event is wrong?
First of all, a five minute conversation is not enough time. These shadchanim could care less. They get paid to come so its worth their while. 
Two, why are we dressing so nicely like we are prancing down a runway? We aren't marrying the Shadchan!
Three, WHERE ARE THE BOYS?! Let's get real people- if you want to make shidduchim, stop looking at the paper. Yes, checking out backgrounds and hashkafos is important, but I bet if you put the boys and girls in the same room FOR TACHLIS you would have a better chance of making a shidduch than a five minute interview and paper filed away for later reference.
Another thing-- where are the local shadchanim? I noticed there was an important (or two) local shadchan who was missing on the scene, a shadchan with a monopoly on a group of boys.
Like I said- I can't complain. I am young, I am still picky about who is redt to me, and BH I have a lot going for me so dating would be nice, but I am not forlorn or desperate. But it bothers me INTENSELY to see a room filled with beautiful girls INSIDE AND OUT, girls who I personally can attest to their maalos and kochos, having to hawk themselves to a market of buyers who just file them away.
Now you might say, putting the boys and girls in the same room would be the same thing, because everyone is just seeing the outside, how they look and what they are wearing, and I get that. I do. But this system, this meeting the shadchan, is unnatural. Strangers coming in to inspect our girls? Do they actually care? If you don't fit their "type" then forget it. 
Maybe I am wrong. Maybe I am just bitter and jaded (and I haven't been dating for so long) but it's gotten personal. It's gotten personal when my close friends are struggling because they have been written off as not good enough. When my good friends are rejected because they aren't a size 0 and well off. When incredible girls are struggling because the shadchan doesn't like how they look. And a billion other reasons.
I don't have a solution. I don't have an answer. I have my own silent pain and rage. I have my own tears and frustration over all the boys who I have loved and lost. I have anger. And so maybe that's why the shadchanim don't call.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Can It Still Be Tuesday?

With the winding down of my semester and the winding up of vacation, I have been lax in my Tuesday Tunes. But since Chanukah still extends until the sunsets tomorrow, I wanted to share a few Chanukah songs and videos that really lit up my Chag.
In no particular order...






A side note: Chanukah is one of those holidays that brings even the most irreligious back to their roots. There is something about the holiday season that resonates with us all. The family The sentiment of triumph. There are so many themes that people can connect to. This is why these songs are so popular, so catchy and so feel good. But in my journey to self (which was rather halted by school) I found that the lesson of light is the ability to find it within yourself. It is not about the darkness of the world- the enemies that try to bring us down. Yes, they exist, but their power comes from us. When we are strong, they are weak. So while Chanukah is all feel good and Sameach, I think it is a Chag that involves deep reflections and introspection. I am late on sharing this, and perhaps in even recognizing it myself, but it's late, my mind is spinning and I want to hold on to the light, that inner light, just a little bit longer.

A Freilichen Chanukah!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Tuesday Tunes

Wow, two weeks in a row! And lucky for you, if you haven't hear about this band, then you are in for a treat...
Continuing on the trend of Neo-Chassidus and its more mind-soul connection, I present to you "Zusha." I discovered Zusha a few weeks ago and have been mesmerized ever since.
You can find their music here: https://www.youtube.com/user/zushamusic/feed

Zusha is a group of three guys whose goal is to connect to Yiddishkeit through simplistic songs, often with just a few words and a lot of niggun. There is something so pure in their music. It stirs up questions. It makes you think.
As I write this, I am listening to this song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AxF8LZ0H17s and through the progression, the chords and simple chanting, I find myself trying to discover the story buried within the song. It's the kind of music that begs you to think deeply. It isn't the usual head banging, voice altered, techno crazy music we are so used to hearing. It is soulful. Thoughtful.
While mainstream Orthodox Jews don't lean towards this kind of music-- the kind of music that best suits a kumzitz-- it is the kind of music that more people should listen to. It speaks to your soul.
What I really appreciate about Zusha is while their music is simple, they also share their thoughts on their site.
Like this one:
The wise men write - that everything in creation (including you and I) can be found in the first word of the torah, "Bereisheet"- 'in the beginning'
One idea from this word. Beis (the first letter, 'two') + Reisheet ('beginning') = Two beginnings. 
Every day, and more specifically every moment, we are given a choice. 
Two ways to think. Two ways to speak. Two ways to act. 
May we be blessed to always choose life, growth, and positivity. 
-zush

 

So simple, yet so profound. Go check them out.

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