Sunday, November 24, 2019

Grateful to God...

Happy Thanksgiving...

Image credit:

It Would’ve Been Enough!

It’s late autumn—
The High Holy Days are over
It is several months until Passover
so this is not the season of the year
when we sing “Dayenu” at Beth Israel
with grateful hearts, because
the apple of God’s eye survived the Exodus
and made it to the Promised Land

Still, I’m feeling thankful today
and feel like singing “Dayenu”
Thanksgiving Day is approaching
and I’m meditating upon God’s goodness

If God had merely given me life
but didn’t make me capable, strong and vibrant
it would’ve been enough!

If He had placed me in a family
but not an environment of acceptance, security, love
it would’ve been enough!

If God had provided me with daily bread and water
but not fruit and vegetables, meat and cake
it would’ve been enough!

If He had simply given me shelter
and not a pleasant home cozy, warm, and safe
it would’ve been enough!

If God had drawn me to Himself
but didn’t fill my heart with jubilation
it would’ve been enough!

And if He led me to the Cross
but didn’t reveal the countless splendors
the Cross secured for me in eternity
it certainly would’ve been enough!

but God’s generosity knows no bounds
and my cup is spilling over into its saucer
with His bounty of wondrous blessings
so I shall thank Him with praise and hallelujahs
singing with all my might—

Day dayenu, day dayenu
day dayenu dayenu dayenu!

Maude Carolan Pych

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Sunday, November 17, 2019

Blessed at the Garden Tomb

While Bob and I were visiting the Garden Tomb,
I received a special blessing...

Photo credit:

Israel Pilgrimage—2006

Bob and I sit meditatively
on a bench in the pastoral garden
in view of the Garden Tomb—
Our pilgrimage is almost over
In a few hours we’ll prepare
for the long flight home

I catch a glimpse of a bookstore
and am jolted into remembering
that one of my poems
"Extraordinary Matzoh"
published in William Francis' book
Celebrate the Feasts of the Lord
may actually be for sale, here
at the Garden Tomb

so we go inside—
and sure enough, see it
beckoning to me from the shelf
among so many other
interesting and inviting holy books

I reach for a copy
even though I have one at home
(except this one
has a label printed in Hebrew
and a price tag in shekels)
So, whether it is silly or frivolous
I approach the cashier to pay

and swipe my hand across
the smooth russet cover that depicts
a glowing hanukkiah and a scroll
then flip through pages
to find what I know
is on page 31…my poem
introducing the chapter
about the Feast of Unleavened Bread

Oh! It blesses my soul
to discover my own simple words
here at this sacred spot
Truly, it blesses my soul to know
even when I return home today
books that contain this earnest poem of praise
will remain as my gift of blessing to the Land

Maude Carolan Pych

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Sunday, November 10, 2019

Dead Sea Dips...

Pastor/Rabbi Jonathan Cahn of Beth Israel Worship Center, Wayne, NJ,
is presently leading a pilgrimage in the Holy Land.
The tour will surely include a dip in the amazing Dead Sea...

Photo credit:

Israel Pilgrimages—1986 & 2006

Twenty years ago—

At midday, I slipped into
crystal clear salty sea-water
warm as bathwater

Saline stung
my freshly shaved legs

Great salt pillars
like giant white mushrooms
rose above the water
and glistened in the daylight

Some bathers climbed upon the pillars
others floated on their backs
and read a magazine
as depicted in advertisements
in glossy travel mags

The surprising buoyancy
delighted me
as silky natural minerals
caressed my skin—
a luxurious
spa-less spa treatment

Over-exuberance caused me
to disregard caution—
Salt-water splashed into my eyes
blinding me
until washed away
with copious freshwater

This trip—

It’s sunset
Our group enters the sea
(actually a big salt lake)
smaller than it was
twenty years ago
due to steady

This time the water
is cool and brown
There are no
salt pillars to climb

We cautiously step
into squishy mud
It oozes between our toes
and swallows our feet
like quicksand

Guarding against sliding
on slick slippery stones
we dip down                                   
and pull up handfuls
of soothing, luxurious mud
and laugh as we
slather it lavishly
over arms, legs
even our faces—
thankful for the cover
of darkness

Later, in the gift shop
we purchase packages
of Dead Sea mud
at five dollars each—
beauty treatments
for our daughters
back home

Maude Carolan Pych

Sunday, November 3, 2019

Happy Birthday, Hubby!

Happy 90th Birthday, Bob Pych!

Sto lat!
"May you live 100 years..."
(at least!)

For Robert Pych—November 3, 2019

Happy birthday, my darling—
Ninety is definitely a milestone!

There’s so much to celebrate—
reasonably good health
great family, close friends
a comfortable life
but most of all
truly, truly, most of all
this is the perfect time to celebrate
enduring love, in these, our golden years

for we live a gentle life
with lots of I love yous
and spontaneous embraces
that generate smiles throughout the day

We take care of one another
and consider each other
in our own unique ways—
You’ve endured plenty of poetry readings
I’ve been known to flip
through magazines at the racetrack
We frequently gather at the Scrabble board
and squabble about those two-letter words
or by the TV, where we really try
to find something mutually agreeable to watch

Every evening we join hands in prayer to God
for all the people we love
and some we’ve never met
whose names are given to us by others

Who would ever have thought
love would keep on growing
and be so tender and sweet
as hair gets greyer
wrinkles get deeper
memories get muddier
and backs get achier
but the truth is
at least in our case, it does

May you live to be 100, hubby!
Sto lat! Sto lat, my dear!!!

Maude Carolan Pych