You wouldn’t think that the Jewish tradition was big on transmigration of souls — but it is. I’m not even sure this concept is taught much anymore in more mainstream non-Orthodox and Hassidic circles. But what do I know? I’ve not set foot in a shul for a very long time. And even then, […]
Dad and I were talking about the “kaddish in two-part harmony” project the other night, and he muttered something about spending a career dealing with death. I’d never quite put it together that his thirty years in the Social Security Administration had had him dealing with death all the time—well, duh! So I asked him to write a guest essay about what that was like.
So. The bookstore the other day — One of Malkah’s favorite things to do on planet Earth was to go with the tzaddik on his frequent forays into the dark and gloomy bowels of used bookstores. Holmes Books, in San Francisco, was one of their favorites together. The tzaddik would give Malkah a whole […]
First they told me I was inheriting the biofather’s art supplies and his own paintings. Biofather was a Chinese painter. Then they found a new copy of the will, and next to my name was one word, in his handwriting — with an arrow to be clear: OMIT is what it said. And I thought, […]
The tzaddik grew up in the Bronx, across from Yankee Stadium. That must say a lot about him, but I’m not sure what exactly. His family lived in a shvitzy little apartment, overcrowded with uncles and cousins and such. That was in addition to mamma, poppa, the tzaddik and his two younger brothers. Of course, […]
Quite a number of people have told me how moved they were by the words I spoke at the my father’s funeral. Some asked for copies of what I said. Still others asked to hear those words for the first time when they read reference to it in an obit somewhere. I don’t think I […]
I never gave my grampa his due, but I’m starting to appreciate him.
“What you really want is closure,” he said. I had called him knowing I was in peril. I asked him what he thought I should feel. He’s pretty good at feeling stuff. But I’m not so sure he’s right. I’m not sure closure is attainable in cases like this. Just as I’m not sure there could […]
descriptions of kaddish recordings from 18-26 November 2010
New Orleans. With the voudon priest. Again. He gives me a reading. And one of the things he says is: “Don’t go to the cemetery. He’s not there. Go to the place where he still resides. The place where he still lives.” And all I can think of is well, where is that? Where is […]