What do we understand
Of the merit of the fathers?
A good breath of life, absorbed
Into their minds (if anyone still bothers
To care), because with their free
Will for ethics, for holy
Luster, which takes deeds and guts
(it takes time to return, slowly,)
And it rests upon us, it
Saturates our skin, it soaks
Into our livers and our ribosomes
(and we believe each fright and hoax)
We nurture and grow each gourd.
Do not leave it to decay,
Do not mistake the mountain for the sand
(the streaks of night that violate the day)
A pillar coalescing in our lucid air
A spiral DNA within our lungs, new, old,
A spray of blossoms, fruits that float
A scent (and overcome the barking scold).
Yaacov David Shulman