Judaica for the Mac?
Book review: Service of the Heart


Ring bells of celebration across the blogosphere: Abdul-Walid and Sophie are wed! I copied one of my favorite love poems ("This Marriage" by Rumi) as a benediction for them.

I love weddings because they're the perfect point of intersection between poetry and religion. In these liminal moments, people pay close attention to the words they use. Beneath the chuppah a state-change is effected, and when the couple walks back down the aisle they're something different than they were when they arrived. What could be more exciting to me as a poet than this proof that language really is transformative?

Also I'm a romantic. I'm charmed (and awed) every time I see two people committing to cherish and celebrate one another, day after day. Asserting that while everyone grows and changes over the course of a lifetime, these two intend to do so side-by-side. Making the leap of faith that says, "I want you to be my fellow traveler, wherever this road may take us."

I sent one of my favorite love poems to Abdul-Walid and Sophie. Today I am posting two more of my favorites beneath the fold. Because once upon a time a rainstorm blew in on the 7th of June, which they tell me was good luck. I'm not sure I ascribe much to the fact of the rain, but my astonishingly good fortune is undeniable, today and every day.


And Our Faces, My Heart, Brief as Photos

When I open my wallet
to show my papers
pay money
or check the time of a train
I look at your face.

The flower's pollen
is older than the mountains.
Aravis is young
as mountains go.

The flower's ovules
will be seeding still
when Aravis then aged
is no more than a hill.

The flower in the heart's
wallet, the force
of what lives us
outliving the mountain.

And our faces, my heart, brief as photos.

-- John Berger


The Wild Rose

Sometimes hidden from me
in daily custom and in trust,
so that I live by you unaware
as by the beating of my heart,

Suddenly you flare in my sight,
a wild rose blooming at the edge
of thicket, grace and light
where yesterday was only shade,

and once again I am blessed, choosing
again what I chose before.

-- Wendell Berry


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