Sunday, September 28, 2014


Here's a poem for all you sinners. It's the Jewish New Year now, when we do taschlikh--we throw lint or bread crumbs from our pockets into a body of water to symbolize letting go of our sins. 


By the wizened roots of a massive oak
under the juniper tree

I cast my sins into the creek
scraping the lint from my pocket,

a mass of gritty regrets
tangled together, lodging under my nails.

I sat on the muddy bank
not caring about my skirt.

Blue gentians twisted in the oak roots,
clover bent under my boots.

One bit of foil was clumped in with my sins.
The lint swished downstream,

but the tiny glint of foil,
flashing in the sun, hooked

on a mass of gingko leaves too great
to be moved by mere water.

Some sins are too beautiful
to ever let go.

from Nine Kinds of Wrong, JKPublishing

1 comment:

  1. I liked this. What struck me were cast sins and scraping of lint, a mass of gritty regrets tangled together. You did not care about your skirt, blue gentians, not blue balls, twisted in the oak. Clover bent under your boots. These are clear words. And then another mention of your sins and foil, and the lint returns to my mind, this time swishing. Hooked on gingko, and this acceptance and celebration of sins, which for writers is like yarn to make sweaters that keep us warm.