Blood, and Nudity and Moloch (Oh, My) — A poem for Torah Portion Acharei Mot-Kedoshim

April 22, 2021

Therefore, I said to the children of Israel:
None of you shall eat blood
Leviticus 17:12

Rest assured, God, Adonai, Holy One
Unseen Savior, Invisible to the point of
wondering what sounds You make
or bath salts You use, as a vegetarian
(and, I guess, by law as a Jew) no blood
will pass through these lips, as I view it
as sacred inside the, sometimes furry,
beings in which it is housed.
It’s not even an issue.

No man shall come near to any of his close relatives,
to uncover [their] nakedness
Leviticus 18:6

Also not an issue, Divine Kahuna
Hallowed Super Being, Creator and Dispeller
of all body itches, ever since the Garden
I’ve been collecting fig leaves in
the fashionable colors of our days –
Plus, I take my signature on the ketubah
seriously, and know exactly whose fig leaves
I’m allowed to pluck away.

And you shall not give any of your offspring
to pass through for Molech
Leviticus 18:21

I remember, once, standing outside a movie theater
with other people who held words as sacred as the ones
You, oh Revered Giver of scrolly text, put in our faces
by law and tradition every week, shouting Moloch
to each other, and innocent movie patrons, and the sky
where, we assume, You have a condo or a mansion or
a cloud-based tabernacle. We were just quoting a poem
from another nice Jewish boy, whose beard, like Herzl
and Moses before him, had long since entered the dust.
Never fear, oh Totem of DNA and long-gone dinosaurs –
We are the children of the children of the children
We know it has always been You.

God Wrestler: a poem for every Torah Portion by Rick LupertLos Angeles poet Rick Lupert created the Poetry Super Highway (an online publication and resource for poets), and hosted the Cobalt Cafe weekly poetry reading for almost 21 years. He’s authored 25 collections of poetry, including “God Wrestler: A Poem for Every Torah Portion“, “I’m a Jew, Are You” (Jewish themed poems) and “Feeding Holy Cats” (Poetry written while a staff member on the first Birthright Israel trip), and most recently “The Tokyo-Van Nuys Express” (Poems written in Japan – Ain’t Got No Press, August 2020) and edited the anthologies “Ekphrastia Gone Wild”, “A Poet’s Haggadah”, and “The Night Goes on All Night.” He writes the daily web comic “Cat and Banana” with fellow Los Angeles poet Brendan Constantine. He’s widely published and reads his poetry wherever they let him.

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