Of goings and comings.
In order to come, one must first go;
In order to arrive, one must first leave –
In order to arrive at a new place,
A new dimension, a holy land,
One must first leave the old place,
The monotonous, mundane take on
Of course, there are those who
Have arrived at brilliant conclusions
Without actually ever leaving the limits
Of their own narrow minds, their canyon hearts…
But if one wishes to arrive at a beginning and
Not a conclusion, one must surely first go forth
From the routine that is to the revolution that will be.
Some things arrive on silver platters –
The important things never do:
If they did, they either aren’t real important…
Or aren’t real silver.
(It’s strange how gold never seems to come on
A silver platter)
In order to come to peace with the world
One must first go to war with the self…
If you will go out to war
Against your enemies
Keep your enemy without very close;
But keep your enemy within even closer.
Fighting with other people is hurtful;
Fighting with yourself is a must.
One must go out to war, must do battle
With the status quotes that you have begun to
Pass off as your own, must fight the abnormalities
That have become the unfortunate norm.
And G-d will deliver them
Into your hands and you
Will capture its captives
If we were to just go out of our minds,
Out of our own little petty squared circles,
The battle would be won.
Most times, the battle, the war is lost,
Because we never even go out to fight.
If we were to just put up a fight against everything
False and artificial how could we, beings true and real, ever
G-d guarantees our victory; all He asks is that we
Go out, get out, and fight, struggle, shed a tear, sweat
A drop, work a little so that we earn what is ours –
Otherwise, if we don’t go out to war, if we never
Challenge what is, how could the peace be complete,
How could we ever know if what we haven’t done,
Haven’t earned, haven’t achieved, is real and eternal?
If we never go out of our minds how could we ever
Know if what we are getting into is pure or just a figment
Of our imagination?
Going out to war is not some anarchistic form of violence:
It is merely questioning everything, battling every ugly
Thing in this universe – not killing it – merely making
It beautiful –
For what is true peace, true victory? Not everyone,
Laying down their arms, but everyone raising them
Up in unison, in harmony, in true, divine peace.
If you will go out (of yourself)…
You will surely come in (to your own).
Mendel Jacobson is a writer, poet and journalist living in Brooklyn. His weekly poetry can be seen at jakeyology.blogspot.com
The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.