Perfectly Imperfect — A poem for Parsha Devarim (Aliyah 3)

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Do not be broken or afraid of them . . .

Deuteronomy 1:29

I recently crossed my own river
or, that’s a metaphor really – it was a mountain.
It landed me in a hidden valley.

When I have to leave to get provisions
a canyon takes me to another valley
and drives me by a house of worship

favored by people who weren’t
at the bottom of the mountain with
the rest of us (though who knows

what happened there before and after?)
They put up a sign that says
The perfect place for imperfect people.

This resonates with me so much
every time I’m off to get a refill of
Triscuits or whatever it may be

I think man, if this whole Judaism thing
doesn’t work out, this may be the place.
We come into this world broken

and imperfect, and that is perfect.
When we fix one thing, there’s always another.
This is what we all have in common.

So when we find ourselves on one side of a river,
scouting the promised unknown on the other –
Wade across without fear.

Take a boat if you don’t want to get your feet wet.
and don’t be embarrassed by that. You may find
the seats fill up around you by others who

are appreciative you made the call. And the people
you’ll find on the other side of the river. It turns out
they are as perfectly flawed as you.

Do not be broken or afraid of them.
Or be just as broken as you are.
Oh, so beautiful, oh, so broken.

These poems are offered free for your enjoyment. If you use them as part of an event, meeting, educational or liturgical setting, please consider tipping the author.

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