Of all the numbers in the ancient text
three is one of the least famous.
Ten is up there with plagues and commandments
Six days of creation
Forty shows up almost everywhere
years in the desert
days and nights of rain;
weeks in a mother’s womb
curses on Adam
it goes on
One God, of course
I thought the rule of threes
began in Aristotle’s back room when
the very first comedian chiseled something
about a Rabbi, an Emperor and a lion
walking into the Coliseum.
(Which of course makes no sense since
the Coliseum is a reference to Rome
and Aristotle, being Greek, preceded that.)
But three has been on a secret mission
since Isaac was declared great three times
in one sentence. (Either that or the editor
of the Torah had that day off.)
I thought it was a fluke, but later
Isaac digs three wells…the first two
are contended by the locals.
But the third, like the famous
third bowl of porridge
was just right.
This is one of our first stories.
It sets up the structure for
how all stories are told.
Allow yourself to fail twice.
That third time is what will guide us
back to the promised land.