Fringes May 2023: Roots that hold fervently to this dark earth

We met on Saturday, May 13 for our shabbat morning service, in a stunningly beautiful time of the year here in the mid-Atlantic, and in the shadow of the 75th anniversary of the Nakba.

You can download our liturgy here. As has become our custom, our psalms alternated between the praising the beauty of the world and our grief and horror at the destructive effects of global warming.

For the blessing of redemption we watched a performance of the poem “Revenge” by Taha Muhammed Ali from the 2006 Dodge Poetry Festival. He reads his original in Arabic, followed by Peter Cole’s translation into English. Watch here. You can read the translation here, and more about Ali’s life and work here.

For Torah study we learned together by listening together to two movements from the 4 part suite “Bright Colors on a Dark Canvas” by Palestinian composer & cellist Naseem Alatrash. Watch the entire piece performed by Berklee World Strings. As activists and members of communities who have been learning about the realities of the Nakba for many years, we used this shabbat to sit with this knowing, to let the emotional realities within the suite wash over us.

The entire suite will be performed live on Monday, May 15th at the UN as part of their first-ever resolution to mark the Nakba. The evening cultural event is 6 – 8 pm ET. Watch the live stream here on Monday.

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