Sunday, April 19, 2009

810. Time

On the second day of Pesah, the rabbi reminded us about time. Slaves can't control it but we, as free people, have that opportunity. We have mastery over time; we can choose when to work, and when to stop.

Well, somewhat. I tried to remind myself of this important truth these past few weeks whenever a deadline bumped into the beginning of parts of the hag, and the need to sleep collided with a deadline. It's been a little crazy, but much fun. I hope to resume semi-regular blogging and write about the seder I led, the new family members I got to know, the Torah I chanted (5 out of 8 days). I am a free person; the choice and power to control time lies in my hands. But freedom isn't easy.

Before I head off to brunch with friends (a true urban marker of freedom, as we all take a break from Sunday cramming of various sorts), I'll start at the end. Yesterday I once again chanted The Birds, Shemini version (they make another appearance over the summer). I knew it well, but my memory balked for fractions of second when I encountered some of the longer, stranger words in unfamiliar handwriting on the scroll. But I also sensed that the yad was trying to push my eyes across the line, egging me on to reach from one syllable to the next. I didn't lose my place; I ambled, instead, from word to word. The effect, for me, was that I got to really hear and listen to each sound, almost as if those birds were making their own music just for me.

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