A Poem for Tisha B’Av

The Ninth of Av

–for Maggid Yitzhak Buxbaum, z”l

In the rhythm of the year our temple fell. We sat low.
As if we might fall again but not as far. We sat low
closer to the ground. We had fallen also
in the heat of August in the month of Av.
Although “I know I am august” I sit low now
for I know something fell and broke. I sit low
and wail in half a chair. Something broke and hurts
chunks of wall and pride of towers. I know I am august
in August and know I am small. The broken wall and the shame.
I will rise slow from my low chair and lift my head.
I am only one of us watching for a new moon.

From The Missing Jew: Poems 1976-2022