Wednesday, November 09, 2005

High-Holiday-Season Highlights, part 6: “ . . . v’hayita ach saméach, & you will be altogether joyful

[As I was saying in the first half of this post—see the previous post—I apologize to my readers for its lateness—'tis, admittedly, a bit after the fact. Unfortunately, Blogger and I have been involved in a long-running dispute—I've been trying to post this since last Tuesday. This is roughly my eighth attempt. I've given up trying to post this where it belongs, which is after "Decaffeinating copy-editor," in the sincere but probably vain hope that it won't get deleted, this time.

I split the original post into two parts and changed the names of both posts—I hope that works, because I’m running out of ideas. See the previous post for the first half.]

Within the past two and a half months, I have had so much joy in my life.

The joy of going to Israel. Seeing my parents there. And my brother. My older niece. My nephew. My younger niece.

Going Israeli folk dancing bi-Y'rushalayim.

Singing and dancing in the aisle at an outdoor concert, also in Jerusalem.

And davvening Mincha at the Kótel.

Then coming home, and seeing our son safely off to college again.

And discovering new music in prayer.The joy of saying “Ma Yakar chasdecha, Elokim, How precious is Your kindness, L-rd” and feeling sheltered under Hashem’s wings as I stand with my tallit (prayer shawl) over my head at the beginning of the Birkot Hashachar.

The joy of hearing Neshama Carlebach’s voice in my head, singing her late father Shlomo’s music, as I say, “Atah hu Hashem Elokeinu bashamayim u-va-aretz u-vi-sh’mei hashamayim ha-elyonim, You are He, Hashem our G-d, in heaven and on earth, and in the heaven of heaven on high.”

Adding Psalm 100 to my P’sukei D’Zimra at a weekday morning minyan, even though I don’t really have time when I’m trying to get to work, because the melody sung by the Diaspora Yeshiva Band to “Ivdu et Hashem b’simchah, bo-u l’fanav bi-r’nanah, Serve Hashem with gladness, come before Him with joyous song” is so infectious that “Resistance is futile.” :)

Realizing that the reason why I can sing the part of their “Zion Mountain” that starts “T’viémo v’titaémo b’har nachalatcha . . . You will bring them and implant them on the mountain of Your heritage . . .” is that I know it from the end of Shirat Yam Suf, the Song of the Reed Sea. Realizing, too, that sometimes I have to be careful which music I hear in my head while davvening, after “hearing” their rollicking Country-Western “T’ka b’shofar gadol . . .Sound the great shofar . . .”—complete with “Yiiiiiii-Haaaaa!”—and almost cracking up in the middle of the Amidah because it was so incongrous in that context. (You can find some of the music of Shlomo Carlebach, Neshama Carlebach, and the Diaspora Yeshiva Band here:

Getting a kick out of being able to find all the words to Blue Fringe’s gorgeous “Av Harachamim, (Father of Mercy),” partly in the Seder Hotza-at HaTorah/the service for taking out the Torah scroll, partly in Avinu Malkénu (Our Father, Our King), and partly in U-n’taneh Tokef (at the end, when the prayer says “. . . k’rachem av al banim, as a father has compassion for his children . . .)“

"Hearing” Lenny Solomon and his Shlock Rock gang sing the beginning of Psalm 92, “Mizmor Shir l’Yom HaShabbat, Tov L’Hodot LaShem, A psalm, a song for the Sabbath day, It is good to give thanks to the L-rd,” and Debbie Friedman sing half the rest of it.

Realizing that I now know five different tunes for the Elul-Holiday-Season psalm’s “Achat Sha-alti mé-ét Hashem, One thing I ask of the L-rd”—one fast tune (composer unknown), one slow one (probably by Carlebach), one by the Diaspora Yeshiva Band, and two totally different ones by Mark.

Teaching the congregation Mark’s “Hashkiveinu” on Erev Simchat Torah during the hakafot.

And dancing in the street with the sifré Torah/Torah scrolls on the morning of Simchat Torah.I had so many reasons to be glad during Elul and the holidays. They were truly ach saméach, altogether joyful.


Blogger PsychoToddler said...

Shira, you make it all worthwhile!

Wed Nov 09, 04:35:00 PM 2005  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Who needs drugs to get "high" when music and prayer, or music *in* prayer, can do the same thing? “Ivdu et Hashem b’simchah, bo-u l’fanav bi-r’nanah, Serve Hashem with gladness, come before Him with joyous song.”

Thu Nov 10, 01:01:00 AM 2005  

Post a Comment

<< Home

<< List
Jewish Bloggers
Join >>