60 Bloggers for Israel’s 60th: Oyster waxes poetic
Posted by Oyster on April 12, 2008
In honor of Israel’s 60th anniversary, Rabbi Yonah of the Blogshul and Jewlicious Festival fame was inspired (in party by Craig Taubman’s 60 hours of music for Israel) to create a blog (60bloggers.com) where 60 different Jewish bloggers would contribute a post that demonstrated the things about Israel that we love. For my contribution, I chose to share with everyone a love-poem that I wrote to Israel when I was taking the highly-controversial Poetry for the People class at UC Berkeley under the late poetess June Jordan. It was my first direct confrontation with anti-Zionism from the graduate-student instructors and Jordan herself that lead me on the path to become the pro-Israel activist that I was for the better part of my college years. But I digress. With no further adieu, here it is:
Sapphire sparkling blue water polishing me
My old and new spring of buildings and ocean
Wistful dry wind sanding my eyes
I love you.
Your cool green water pours me out
My eyes tear when I remember you
Eretz Israel, love me as your own son.
I know you.
You’ve met me before.
In salty-dry craters of rocky hills
Misty forests bursting with green
Sun-swallowed mazes of tents and bazaars…
I know that you have no reason to love me.
I never write
I never call
Not born beneath your Asiatic stars
Not born from dust in a land
Where holy men still kiss the ground
Years pass since last we met but
I don’t know how many more years will pass but
I don’t know what language to ask it in but
Tomer Altman © 2000-2008
“Lo Que Debemos Que Decir”
Poetry For The People
Cross-posted to 60bloggers.com.