The Messiah Will Come

I am publishing this poem here because of the thorough apathy I have found it gained with every last publisher I showed it to. Because the publishing world has rejected it and it is short, I will give it to the public, free of charge. It is the Jewish view of when the Mashiach (messiah) will finally come. Everyone will have “gone good” or “gone bad” but not a single one of us will be someplace in between. That is the Jewish idea. Yet nobody knows whether it will be that humankind will have redeemed itself or proven itself totally unworthy except God. So we wait because “though he may tarry, still he will come,” for our redemption’s harbinger of God’s Kingdom in Heaven and on Earth.

Never trust paradox;

it lies like a riddler

and yet one rests on my heart:

they say the messiah comes

either when all Israel is good

or when finally Israel has become

as corrupt as the shallow earth

on which she is expected to grow,

the hard earth with her pebble and brambles

which choke plants growing up

the flower for which the world

of weeds continues to exist, free and wild

like Israel before Saul and David.

The messiah will come—

not when the Jews are pure

when martyrs are lit with fires,

like Rabbi Akiba in his torch,

or when scholars study her treasures

by reason’s and the moon’s light,

or when brilliant heretics fall away

like Spinoza with his ethics

breathing the faith that God and Nature are one.

The messiah will come—

when Jews are finally known

as reprobates worse than gentiles,

when their sins move Abraham to tears

and Isaac to laments

and Jacob to self-immolation—

because their synagogues lie empty

on even Yom Kippur

and their yarmulkes and prayer books

lie abandoned in the shul

far from any practice at home.

Then the messiah will come.

When the messiah comes he will smile,

“Good work.  I am here at last.”

Published by hadassahalderson

I am a professional author who lives in Wichita, KS. I went to Friends University and spent one year at Claremont Graduate University. My published work includes: The Bible According to Eve I-IV and Faust in Love.

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