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A song for the climb

The 5th moon of Av waning.

Snow appeared on the pass this morning.

The descent into memory and loss has hit bottom

and rebounded.

The days of mourning are done

A Song for the Climb (Psalm 121)

Estranged[1] from the Source

of moon, mountain and sun

Afraid of the emptiness

if You don’t come.

If your name is Nothingness[2]

why do I run

When need and fulfillment all

flow from the One.

Lift up my eyes (lift up my eyes),

See hilltop meet skies (hilltop meet skies)

In clouds and in peeks[3] (clouds and in peeks)

Find the help that we seek (help that we seek).

Here is my helper,

with me[4] all along

Now planting in soil,

now lifting up song[5]

Seeds of my longing,

sounds of rebirth

Inspired by heavens,

remaking the earth.

Song for the climb (song for the climb)

Song for the climb (song for the climb)

Shir hammalot (Shir hamaalot)

Hamaalot aynai (hamaalot aynai)

Shir hamaalot (shir hamaalot)

[1] The word for stranger or estranged/ זר is embedded in the word for ‘my help’ עזרי .

[2] The Hebrew ‘from where’ / מאין has also been read as meaning ‘from nothingness’ / מ-אין.

[3] The pun here is intended – the divine ‘appears’ as it were in glimpses, so we climb to ‘peaks’, like Mt. Sinai [or Horev] into the clouds hoping for ‘peeks’ of the Unseen One through clouds and cracks or clefts of the rock (Exodus 3:3-6, 33:18-23).

[4] The preposition here ‘from’ / מעם can also be split into two words, ‘of’ and ‘with’ or even ‘of people’/ מ-עם.

[5] This of one of the fifteen or so psalms that is given the title “Song of the Ascent” by the Hebrew Bible / TaNaKh, probably referencing the context of pilgrims making the ascent to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem atop Mt. Zion.

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