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Poem: "Mipnei Tikkun Ha'olam" - The Wordsmith's Forge
The Writing & Other Projects of Elizabeth Barrette
Poem: "Mipnei Tikkun Ha'olam"
This is the linkback poem for the May 3, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl, which was written as spillover from the April 5, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from DW users Capriuni and Shiori_makiba. It also fills the "Ma'oz Tzur" square in my 7-1-15 card for the Winter Fest in July Bingo fest.   This poem belongs to the series Clay of Life, which you can find via my Serial Poetry page.

All 15 verses have been posted. Linkers include: technoshaman, wyld_dandelyon, DW user Alatefeline, DW user Shiori_makiba, mdlbear, kestrels_nest, DW user Helgatwb

Mipnei Tikkun Ha’olam

Menachem the blacksmith
drove into a large town and
declared, "We will stay here
for a while. It is nearly time
for Chanukkah, and the snow
is making travel more difficult."

Yossele the golem smiled
and nodded. He had never
been allowed to celebrate
Chanukkah before, and
looked forward to it.

The townspeople were not
so welcoming, however.

Oh, they were happy enough
to have the work of a golem
making the blacksmith's line
move quicker, but when it
came time for the festival,
they tried to turn him away.

"That is not a real man,"
they said. "That is nothing
but a clay statue given
false semblance of life."

"Yossele may not have been
born of woman, but he was made
of clay just like Adam," said Menachem.
"Besides, he ran away from his old master
because he was not allowed to rest on
the Shabbat, as is right and proper."

"What has that got to do with
anything?" said the townspeople.

"Mipnei tikkun ha’olam,"
said Menachem, "any one who
is capable of following the Torah
must be permitted to do so."

They could not very well argue
with that, and so Yossele was
allowed to attend the festival.

He watched the lighting of
the menorah that Menachem
had made, and listened to
the recital of the berakhot.

He could not sing "Ma'oz Tzur,"
but he banged his hand on a barrel
and kept time with the song.

The children taught Yossele
how to play the dreidel game,
which he enjoyed a great deal
and was surprisingly good at.

The women fried latkes and
many other foods in hot oil.

Two rabbis read from the Torah
and then discussed the meanings
of their respective passages,
while Yossele listened in awe.

In the end, the townspeople
had to admit that even though
Yossele had not been born
a Jew in the usual way, he
made a very good one.

* * *


"Mipnei tikkun ha'olam" means roughly "for the good of the world."  It refers to things done and interpretations made so that society may continue in working order.

Chanukkah is a Jewish holiday.

"Ma'oz Tzur" is a traditional Jewish song.

Enjoy some Torah readings for Channukah.

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Current Mood: busy busy

12 comments or Leave a comment
wyld_dandelyon From: wyld_dandelyon Date: May 3rd, 2016 10:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
I tweeted! Will do Facebook too.
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: May 3rd, 2016 11:02 pm (UTC) (Link)

Thank you!

Your verses are up!
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: May 4th, 2016 05:33 am (UTC) (Link)

Thank you!

Your new verses are up.
kestrels_nest From: kestrels_nest Date: May 4th, 2016 11:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
I linked on FB yesterday. Forgot to note it here, though. :(
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: May 4th, 2016 11:08 pm (UTC) (Link)


No problem! I have posted your new verse, which puts us past the halfway mark.
kestrels_nest From: kestrels_nest Date: May 5th, 2016 12:07 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Okay...

helgatwb From: helgatwb Date: July 14th, 2016 02:41 am (UTC) (Link)

thnidu From: thnidu Date: July 15th, 2016 11:42 pm (UTC) (Link)

• which ^ enjoyed a great deal
^ he

Edited at 2016-07-15 11:43 pm (UTC)
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: July 16th, 2016 12:57 am (UTC) (Link)


buffarama From: buffarama Date: September 25th, 2016 07:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have just found and enjoyed this series immensely :)
I wanted to tell you that this story is not linked on your serial poetry page, but I enjoyed the series so much I went looking for it
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: September 25th, 2016 08:51 pm (UTC) (Link)

Thank you!

I'm glad you enjoyed it so much. I have updated the Serial Poetry page to include this link.
12 comments or Leave a comment