WaterFalling Free

going sitting
going being
there on the bus
the bus ride

from one stop
to the next

something different
every day
this is Israel

Birthright-like
something

this trip

me and the
rest of the young
adolescent
college-age

Jews

on this great
big trip

Ch. 1

three weeks bouncing around
carefree us college kids
us jewish kids
on this free trip to Israel
to see all the things
we were supposed
to see

to learn about something
I think
I don’t know exactly

but there we were
breathing in the air
of Israel
this land this holy land
as we went in our motor
coach van

chauffered by Rabbis
and Rebbetzin
going to and fro

like we were supposed to

Ch. 2

How fantastic it all was
with Tsfat the mystic
candle shop

and everything
beer drinking laughing
merrily
girls separated from boys
but we’re all in this together
and now
for the real adventure

Ch. 3

We’re here in this
place this wilderness like
park or something
unclear exactly what it is
but we’re here

all of us the whole
group and we have our
hiking shoes on and
tevas and crocs or whatever
it doesn’t really matter

us jews walking through
with our sunscreen and
caps and sunglasses
and backpacks
and water bottles
going through
and down and down
getting bitten by bugs
or was it
the plants
with those sharp spikes
hitting us
in our legs

I don’t know
but there we were
ready

for this great wonderfall
adventure

Ch. 4

and there that pool of water
how crystal
how cool we would climb
up the rock faces and jump
in and the boys
not yet men
puffing out their chests
exasperating
trying to impress the girls
i mean women

and the Rabbis and the Rebbetzin
wearing their black and white
outfits pants soaking wet
in the water
this wonderfall
experience

we were having in the midst
of the land of the jews

Ch. 5

the random Rabbi
some young guy
with a beard maybe in his
twenties if we were lucky
leading the way
through this wilderness
party

I’m sure this is all quite
natural
as its meant to be
something to make us
feel comraderie
and fraternity with each
other and with God

with God?

just maybe

Ch. 6

walking and walking
and thinking to ourselves
the chit and chatter
of whatever
whoever else
feeling the urge
to break up the monotony
but yet

this was new
different

at least
not the same thing

i mean sure we
would go and read
and sing prayers
to the divine
in hebrew later
and drink the same
mediocre Israeli
beer

but there was something
different
something different here
as we walked through
this wilderness
trek in the middle
of the land

of Israel

Ch. 7

There it is
right there I see it
that shining steel ladder
that ladder of Jacob
or whatever it was
that forty foot ladder
yes it must have been at least

standing in our paths
leading down from that
ledge
to the bottom of the cool
waters below

well apparently the Rabbi says
we must go one after the other
down this ladder

I hope you’re not afraid of heights
me neither
and we go foot after foot
down this huge ladder down into
the cooling waters
with our shoes in laminated
containers to not get
wet
we go and descend
and swim across this
little watering hole
this little baptismal
mikvah or whatever
it was

in the path
of this wilderness

Ch. 8

made it isn’t that wonderful
but then
I have an idea
yes me and this guy Jeff
what a great idea

“Hey Rabbi, can we go back
up the ladder
just the two of us
and from there
we’d like to jump”

“Well, I don’t see anything
wrong with that
I mean we are jews
in the land of Israel
aren’t we not?
and God has our backs
in all endeavors
I say
fare thee well
good sirs
go up the ladder
and find your conquest
come down quicker
than ever
the best
idea ever

I will be here
we all will
awaiting your safe
return
no need for concern.”

Ch. 9

“Uh, OK”
and so we go
me and Jeff
the two of us brave souls
so proud so excited
to show off in front of
the girls
yes we were we were
going to jump off that big
ole cliff
we were going to lunge
ourselves down that forty
foot drop for all to see
maybe someone would
take a picture
and then I can show it
to my friends later
and say hey see how
cool I am see the
way I jumped off
of that cliff
into that pool of

cool water

with everyone else
around looking

thinking man
he is sooo
cool

Ch. 10

We go and we climb
that ladder that ladder
of Jacob or whatever it
was that silver ladder
rung after rung forty feet
into the air I think
I don’t know I don’t care

and then there we are
standing up there
who will go first
will it be me

or him
I look at Jeff
smiling
he looks at me
we look at each other

really

Ch. 11

and I think
whatever I’ve jumped
off things before
not this high
but things I’m sure
I’m a professional
jumper practically
anyways

what’s the big deal
the gravity will
take me where I need
to be
and before you know it

there I will be swimming
and playing and laughing
in the cool waters

and how cool all the girls
will think I am and
want to do fun things
with me later

yes

time

essence

Ch. 12

and so I look at Jeff
and I jump
I jump out as far as I can

airborn

desiring not to hit the rocks
below I don’t want to do that

so I jump
I jump as far as I can

to get away from those death
rocks I don’t need my day
spoiled by impailment

and I go and jump as
far

as I can

Ch. 13

and there

I am

in the air

there in the air

alone

the Rabbis
the girls
the guys

Jeff

they’re elsewhere
I’m there freefall
waterfall
wonderful

in the air

apex
just yet
dropping
dropping

dropping
faster
faster
faster

the wall is approaching
the wall is approaching
I didn’t think about the wall
on the other side

how far did I jump out
how far did I jump?