DEBATE with the RABBI
by: Howard Nemerov
You’ve lost your religion, the Rabbi said.
It wasn’t much to keep, said I.
You should affirm the spirit, said he,
And the comm~tal solidarity.
I don’t feel so solid, I said.
We are the people of the Book, the Rabbi said.
Not of the phone book, said I.
Ours is a great tradition, said he,
And a wonderful history.
But history’s over, I said.
We Jews are creative people, the Rabbi said.
Make something, then, said I.
In science and in art, said he,
Violinists and physicists have we.
Fiddle and physic indeed, I said.
Stubborn and stiff-necked man!
the Rabbi cried.
The pain you give me, said I
Instead of bowing down, said he,
You go on in your obstinacy.
We Jews are that way, I replied.
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