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Rosh Ḥodesh Shevat, a prayer-poem by Trisha Arlin

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Eternal One-ness,
Living outside of time
Blessed HaMavdil,
The One Who Divides:

We imagine that long ago
We might have been afraid
When the moon disappeared.
It was so dark at night
Like the end of the world.
We howled at the empty sky
And then, like a miracle,
A sliver appeared.
The moon, it’s back!
We gave thanks for the new moon.

Did you know that in the fifties
The United States Government
Considered blowing up the moon
Right out of the sky
Just to freak out the Russians?
But smart people decided it was too dangerous
And the moon was saved.
We give thanks for the sane and the rational.

This new month,
Rosh Ḥodesh Shevat,
The new month of winter,
Begins as the month of Tevet ends.
Tevet is the month of resting and darkness.
Shevat is the month of days growing longer
But somehow also colder,
January and February.
When the world seems the most devoid of life,
We give thanks for the future.

This is the month when we tell the story
Of the escape from the narrow place.
This is the month of Shabbat Shirah,
When we sing the song of liberation.
We give thanks for freedom.
This is the month when we talk of wine and nuts and fruit,
The New Year of the Trees.
This is the month of Tu biShvat
When we eat the gifts of our planet.
We give thanks to the earth.

Blessed One-ness
Outside of Time, Eternal,
Blessed HaMavdil
Dividing time into years and days.
And every month,
Sharing the new moon with us.
For that and so much more, we give thanks.


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