Balaam (no relation) is hired to go to the Israelites
(every relation) and let curses fall out of his mouth.
On the way his donkey (of the famous Moabite donkeys)
stops because only she can see the angel blocking the road.
Balaam (loves his coffee) strikes the donkey
who, like something out of Narnia (not Jewish), begins
to admonish him in the language of the day. Balaam
(a sorcerer, a wizard) displays no issue with
a talking donkey and simply engages in conversation.
Everyone’s eyes are now open – Balaam (two eyes)
Donkey (two more eyes) and the angel (number of
eyes angels are known to have.) Now (not before)
Balaam is the sort to have awareness of the
presence of angels. (Are you? You should be. They’re
right there.) The journey continues (we should all
be so lucky.) And three times upon encountering
the Israelites, Balaam (glutton, foreigner) who
was hired to say curses, to damage with words,
can only say blessings. To Hell with you becomes
How lovely are your tents? – May the fleas of
a thousand camels infest your armpits becomes
Your dwelling places, oh Israel, extend like streams
like gardens by the river, like aloe which God planted
like cedars by the water. It’s poetry. It’s beautiful
poetry. (Do you like poetry?) And now we say these
words every morning (or just on Saturday mornings
or maybe you say different words or maybe you
just think them). May this forever be your way
with words. If curses and hateful speech are
ready to fall out of your mouth, let them turn to
blessings. Your intended cursee may be the one.
Keep your eyes open for angels on the road.
And pay attention to the behaviors of the animals
you co-habit with. (dogs, cats, donkeys, fish,
children) They often see things before you.
The gutters falling off your house. The moment
before the earth shakes plates out of your cabinets.
How lovely are your tents, (who still lives in a tent?)
oh, citizens of earth, your dwelling places, (house,
apartment, kibbutz, micro-space, man-cave, commune)
oh, human animal, oh, gentle ears, oh, stranger on the
road, oh family, oh, blessings to you. Never curses.