These and Those

Musings from Students of the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem

Jerusalem Redeemed or Jerusalem L’Malah, Jerusalem L’Matah

Posted on December 26, 2012 by Tadea Klein

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Jerusalem is redeemed by her ordinariness
By the wait for tardy buses
	the fear of meshugeneh drivers
	the lines at the bank
	In rows of clothes hung out to dry,
		I see ordinary people, with habitual concerns
	Petty, of this earth, 
		utterly familiar and utterly commonplace
Jerusalem is elevated by her extraordinariness
	By Arab women in hijaab and heels
	And distracted, bearded men in tall black hats
	By churches so beautiful that you could weep
	And a blurred fog of fact and memory
		inhaled with every other breath
Jerusalem, ordinary and extraordinary
becomes an almost-home by means prosaic and immense
By the whistling of the koomkoom on a cool evening
And the taste of fresh figs found nowhere back home
In waiting for the change of the traffic light
And the casual Shabbat greetings of the pierced convenience store clerk
	dressed in faded blue jeans