Shekhinah: Pesukey D’Zimrah (Verses of Song)

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Shekhinah: the Presence
Shekhinah: the Presence

Section 3 of “Shekhinah: The Presence” by Joseph Zitt
This is an unedited scan of the text, courtesy of Josh Ronsen
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She is spirit
She is air
She is earth on fire
  Above, below the waters

She is but a fragment
The least, some say,
  of the shells
  of the Creator

but yet
the least part of the infinite
  is greater than
  the greatest of us,
we who are defined
  by flesh
  and continuity.

She is everywhere
  the creator is;
that is-
she is everywhere

yet she is
most wonderfully,

summoned by prayer
summoned by our intent
summoned by our wishes
from the silent world of dreams

Arise, most ancient!
Arise, our mother!
Arise, our bride!
Arise, our daughter!

We raise our eyes
  our hands
  our hearts
  our voice
unto the hills

and sing together
"a song for the dedication of the house"
"a psalm for the thanks-offering"
"a hymn for praise"
and psalm after psalm
"Hallelujah!" (146)
"Hallelujah!" (147)
"Hallelujah!" (148, 149, 150)
and from Chronicles, Chronicles,
  Nehemiah, Exodus

we praise the Creator
  who may or may not be hearing us
  who may or may not accept us
  who may or may not answer
    our prayers,
but even those of us who wonder
if the Creator exists at all
  or ever did
  or ever will
join in the song
as if our voices
  can will into existence
  the one whose will
  would have caused us to exist

and from the fervent murmur
  of our voices
joined together,
  once per psalm
  in unison,
then breaking apart again
  to the true human rhythm
  where the solitary
  simulates the simultaneous
  like the waves,
    joining, peaking,
    then drifting back
    to independent currents
  like the eagles
    soaring in a seemingly
    common spiral
    (yet, if you watch each one,
    flying in a multitude
    of personal air-dances
    of ragged individuality)

arises a more powerful magic
  a common voice
  the syllables we utter
  combining, merging
an incantation of secret names
  that no single voice
  could dare pronounce
as inverse sacred lullaby

and from the slumber
  of pauses between prayers
  of the passage between planes
  of the journey
    through the spheres
    to this lowest
    (but still needed)

our ancient

and lowering her arms
  opens her eyes
  tests her legs
  (to see whether
    she stands on sky
  or on our far more common


her legs are the legs
  of a colt
  new to gravity
her arms the wings
  of dragonflies
soft taloned fingers
  those of eagles who
  in unseen gentle moment
  nurture new-hatched young
her body the stem
  of a warm-blooded sunflower
  turning slowly, slowly
  as she


and focuses our intention
  on her Presence
  on the Presence
    of the Creator
    of this manifestation
      of words of love
      of words of law

(not made flesh, no-
though we can touch her,
  hold her
  dance with her
  in this extended moment,
still she has no
  failings of the flesh
  and can not ache
  and can not strain
  and can not,
    even for a moment,
yet will be here, real,
while sustained by our intensity,
and little longer
till she must return
  to the world of dreams
  or another hall of prayer

and focuses our hearts upon her

and we circle her like planets
  reflecting her light
  upon each other
echoing her movements

and as she moves,
  we move
and as she sings,
  we sing,
and as she wakes the morning world
  we step

and each in his own manner
every body, every soul,
  adding the motions we have learned
in the pain and joy
  of our existence
repeating and embellishing
  her praisedance
  in private ways

step Hallelujah! (all the earth)
  Hallelujah! (o my soul)
  Hallelujah! (all the angels)
  Hallelujah! (with a new song)
  Hallelujah! (closer, closer)

drawn by joyous gravity
  we circle her,
  we fall in toward her,
  longing for her
  to embrace the Presence
    grasp the heart of prayer
    lay our hands upon the holy

and our leader calls out,
is the Great Name!"

and we move to melt into the Presence,
  lose ourselves in her,
  she who loves and comforts
  she whose power is such
  that we forget ourselves and




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