10/10/2008

Yom Kippur 2008 and a Sin of Pride

Yesterday, Thursday October 9th, I went to Yom Kippur service as observed by Seaside Jewish Community here in Lewes / Rehoboth. I was able to stay for two hours, listened to lots of Hebrew mostly sung, read prayers, and spent considerable time in silence reading the prayers of contrition and confession. It was time well spent with good friends in contemplation of new blessings after old wreckage. I was reminded of a very "Anglican" thing...our concrete sense that we are miserable sinners one and all. Later I wrote this poem.


Yom Kippur 2008 and a Sin of Pride

I’ve been listing my sins today.
They don’t seem particularly interesting;
everyone does the stupid,
dopy, inelegant
morally flatfooted same,

all share the perverseness
of small greeds,
large gaping mouths,
forming words of obsequiousness.

“Muy obligado,” we say,
scampering away with the silver spoon
in our back pocket.

This must bore the Great One
to distraction.

For a moment I thought
larger sins might make me shine
just for a moment,
before the judgment throne.

Adonai is known for loving
the outrageous sinner,
at least remembering their names –
David so well he became a byword,
an advertisement for God’s love.

Yet I hear not a whisper about
the One on the throne
recognizing my malfeasance,
my petty crimes,
offering some personal recognition,
some forgiving sign.

I know He has his eye on the sparrow
and his arrow finds its mark,
still I am just a union man,
my sins the sins of many,
my judgment and release
part of a package deal.

Still, to think that
the Great Judge
might see in my confession
reason to smile,
to rouse from judgment
to interest…

Ah! the wonderful sin of pride!

3 comments:

  1. Mark, would that my sins cause the Great One to smile. I'm fairly sure that they do. Pride seems rather evenly distributed.

    I like your poem quite a lot.

    ReplyDelete
  2. A 'union man'? There's a clergy union?
    Can you go on strike? How long would it take for management to be brought to the table?
    Could you be replaced by scabs for less money?

    ReplyDelete
  3. fred...no a union of sinners not notable from the rest.. it is the union of the undistinguished sinners.

    Re a clergy union... no, thank God. We are under authority which is sometimes difficult, but not as difficulty as trying to pit management and workers against each other.

    As to scabs... can we be replaced by scabs for less money? yes, and sometimes are. But that's another story!

    ReplyDelete

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