Got a Light?
by Rick Lupert

This light’s for Hanukkah …
for a people who choose to begin
our best of days with light.
What special Jewish day
doesn’t start with on open flame?

This light’s for the Dreidel …
for the great miracle that
happened there, unless
you happen to be there
where it’s changed to here
because we’re inclusive like that.

This light’s for latkes …
Potato pancakes
because everything good
begins and ends
with potatoes.

This light’s for Sufganiyot …
Jelly Donuts. Not quite as popular
as latkes in all the official surveys
but, really, who can complain
when a donut comes along?

This light’s for oil …
Be careful it’s flammable!
Bad for you in every way!
But fry anything in it and the
memory of that miracle
flies back into our hearts.

This light’s for Maccabees …
Judah and his whole crew.
When the not really elected leaders
started to poo-poo everything
they risked life and limb
for all these lights. Stand up
like a Judah, my friends.

This light’s for the shamash
Doesn’t take a night off.
Does the essential work that
lets the other eight shine.
Be the shamash you wish
to see in the world.

This light’s for miracles …
It doesn’t matter if a great miracle
Happened here or there
just that you believe that one
could happen at all.
How many miracles are you missing?

Got a light?

This poem previously appeared in the Los Angeles Jewish Journal.


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