A New Year for Trees

This Sabbath is also Tu B'Shevat, the new year for trees.  It's a quiet little holiday, nestled in the lull between Hanukkah and Purim, little noticed by any but Orthodox Jews, much in the way trees themselves can quietly fade into the background unless you take the time to notice them.  Trees don't demand attention … Continue reading A New Year for Trees

Safek – When a Man Becomes a Question

Note - This post was also published on neshamas.com, a really wonderful website for Jewish creative writing. I never knew a person could be a question until I heard the words that made him one. In one sentence, decades of his life went from solid memory to fragile uncertainty. I watched, helpless, as the ground … Continue reading Safek – When a Man Becomes a Question

The Scent of Shabbat

Thursday night and Friday afternoon, at my house, are for cooking.  Not the rushed, hurried cooking that happens the rest of the week to keep stomachs filled.  That cooking is utilitarian.  That cooking is focused on nutrition and speed, pared down to the most basic flavors and meals that can be consumed between the demands … Continue reading The Scent of Shabbat

Sarah’s Pregnancy

There is a subtle irony in the idea that Sarah Imenu is the mother of all who convert, spiritually.  I picture her amused at the idea because she, a woman who had so much trouble conceiving and carrying a child in the physical world, is now probably constantly pregnant and giving birth to new progeny … Continue reading Sarah’s Pregnancy