Immerse, my body bare as birth.
Emerge with my skin tingling.
Ascend the fifteen stairs to you
singing love songs on every step.
At the door to the holy of holies
I vibrate like a struck bell.
My fears rise up. What makes me think
I'm good enough for you?
Only this: you make me want
to shine as only I can shine.
Let me find favor in your eyes.
I ache to draw near to you.
Nothing I can offer would be enough.
All I have is this heart, bruised
and tender. All I am is this heart,
saying your name with every beat.
Immerse, my body bare as birth. In the Avodah service on Yom Kippur we read about how the high priest used to prepare for the work of Temple service by immersing in a mikvah.
Ascend the fifteen stairs[.] In Hebrew, the number 15 can be spelled יה, which is a name of God. There are fifteen psalms of ascent, which may have once been sung on each of fifteen steps in the Temple in Jerusalem.
[T]he holy of holies[.] The inner sanctum of the Temple was known as the holy of holies, which was entered only by the high priest and only once a year.
I ache to draw near to you. The Hebrew קרבן, often translated as "sacrifice" or "offering," comes from the root קרב which means drawing-near.
This is another poem in my ongoing Texts to the Holy series.
Shabbat shalom to all who celebrate.