from Little Psalms (author).
Dance Like Antelope
Hashem, please help my feet
Dance like antelope,
Shimmer like a meadow,
Climb like boulders strewn on mountains;
Please help my fingers
Gesture like smoke,
Open like harvested fields,
Endure like the hills,
Flicker like the surf,
Clap together like a flock of ravens;
Please help my mouth
Sing like forests,
Roar like caves,
Plead like stars,
Burst like a field of poppies;
Please help my body
Pour like the Gulf Stream,
Melt like a spring thaw,
Flee like the zebra,
Breathe like a continent—
Vast as Asia,
Swirling as a duststorm,
Surging as a dolphin,
Empty as a locust pod,
Broken as a meteor,
Strong as a crag which has endured all battering--
To serve You, Hashem.
I Held a Letter in My Hand
I held a letter in my hand:
“Hear, O Israel...”
A letter which swept through the nile‑blue sky
And splashed into my hand;
A parchment in my reverent hand,
A silver fish, alive in my wondering hand,
A comet showering the paths of my hand,
A cinder spinning fire in my hand,
A shadow wriggling in my open hand—
“Hear, O Israel...”
Place Me in a Rocketship
Place me in a rocketship
Streaking in a silent sweep
Across the swirl of star‑filled sky,
And I will seed the night with prayer.
Cold and gloomy,
The autumn rain drips
Beneath the collar
Of my long, white coat.
On soggy leaves
On the basketball court
I circle and I sing,
I lift my arms to You.
The branches shake out
Their apron of rain.
Help me lift my arms,
Help me sing,
Help my heart, Hashem, sing out to You.
You Took a Globe and Spun It in Your Hands
Hashem, You took a globe and spun it in Your hands.
In every molecule of air,
In every cloud floating above a waving field in Ganeshpur,
You are there--
In every wagon‑track in Bolivia,
In every marsh whose cat‑tails shiver in the August wind.
Hashem, You took the globe and spun it in Your hands.
The waters washed the wooded shores,
The seabass flickered in the bobbing swell,
And deep below, You dwelt with the lantern fish
Which, unaware, hung in the cold, eternal water.
Hashem, You spun the globe in Your hands;
You said You will be present
In the rivers, gorsebushes, magpies,
Raspberries, green‑grizzled boulders and sharp grasses;
And that when a human being,
Quick and frail as a flashing starling,
Turned from his work
To the work of Your fingers, and sang of You,
That You would be there
In the breeze beside him,
And hold him in Your great, warm hands.