At The Table

Every year, Jews around the world gather with family members and friends to celebrate liberation—liberation of the Jews from Egyptian slavery in days past, and liberation of all people in days to come. With the Hagada to guide us, we make our way through various texts, topics and discussions as we wrestle with the complexities of human nature. One section asks that we consider 4 types of children: the wise child who is eager to learn everything possible about our tradition; the so-called wicked or alienated child who challenges everything; the simple child whose questions are direct and perhaps one-dimensional; and the child who is too confused, or maybe to hesitant, to ask any questions at all. The Hagada also reminds us that at one time or another, we all embody each of these qualities, ourselves.

***

At The Table

We raise our glasses,

wash our hands ceremoniously,

dipp our greens and boiled eggs in salt water.

We read,

and remember,

and sing songs of praise.

In the middle of it all,

we eat—

matzah ball soup and fish loaf for tradition,

pomegranate chicken and parsley potatos for today.

And this morning

you are the wicked child,

the son who asks, “What does this mean to you?”

“You are not unredeemable,” I assure,

“There is always a place at the table for you.”

And you hug me tight,

my “bad” boy,

who never stops questioning the world,

the reason for pain and war and strife,

who never stops loving me.

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