Friday, January 27, 2006

Friday Poetry Blog

as suggested by jo(e). This was part of a service I planned yesterday for other UCC ministers. I got the xerox of it from a workshop - not sure where it's from, but at the bottom it says, among other things that it's by Harold M Schulweis, founder of the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous.

Playing With Three Strings

We have seen Yitzhak Perlman
Who walks the stage with braces on both legs,
On two crutches.

He takes his seat, unhinges the clasps of his legs,
Tucking one leg back, extending the other,
Laying down the crutches, placing the violin under his chin.

On one occasion one of the violin strings broke.
The audience grew silent but the violinist didn't leave the stage.
He signaled the maestro, and the orchestra began its part.
The violinist played with power and intensity on only three strings.

With three strings, he modulated, changed, and
Recomposed the piece in his head.
He retuned the strings to get different sounds,
Turned them upwards and downward.

The audience screamed delight,
Applauded their appreciation.
Asked later how he had accomplished this feat,
The violinist answered
It is my task to make music with what remains.

A legacy mightier than a concert.
Make music with what remains.
Complete the song left for us to sing,
Transcend the loss,
Play it out with heart, soul, and might
With all remaining strength within us.

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