Parsha Poem: Shoftim / שפטים

Devarim/Deuteronomy 16:18-21:9

clip_image002Once Shmuli decided to start a new club;

“We’ll have lots of fun!” he told Clarence and Blub.

Blub thought at first they should make up some rules,

But Clarence said, “No, those are only for schools!”

“Okay,” said Shmuli, “let’s go out and play!”

And he brought balls and snacks to share for the day.

Well, the next day, Blub came, and Clarence did, too,

And Shmuli said, “what do you think we should do?”

“Let’s play ball,” said Clarence; “No, eat,” Blub said.

So Shmuli went back for a ball and some bread.

But his mother said no: “I can’t feed the whole street!”

“Oh, no,” said Blub, “But I wanted to eat.”

“So we’ll go to the store,” said Shmuli to the guys,

“We’ll buy a sweet treat, a Rosh Chodesh surprise.”

He had a dollar, and bought chocolate bars,

Which they shared sitting down to watch passing cars.

The next day, though, he had no money to share;

“Well, what can we eat, then?” Blub asked in despair.

“I bought the snacks last time,” said Shmuli out loud,

clip_image004“And it sure costs a lot to feed the whole crowd.”

“Let’s just play ball, then,” said Clarence at last;

But when they played ball, just a few minutes passed

Before Clarence threw it too hard, up into the air;

Landing “boom!” it fell flat, squashed beyond repair.

“Oh, no!” cried Shmuli, who looked terribly sad,

“That’s my new ball! The best one I had!”

“Oh,” said Clarence, “I wish I had another,

I guess I’ll go home now; I think that’s my mother.”

So Shmuli and Blub sat alone on the grass,

Watching and lying there, seeing clouds pass.

“What a dumb club,” Shmuli sighed to his friend,

“No food, now no ball – no more money to spend.”

“Well,” said Blub, “why not start a new one?

Where we all share the money, the toys and the fun.”

“Sure!” said Shmuli, “but how do we know

That the kids won’t just come by, take stuff and go?”

Blub told him we learn from Parshas Shoftim,

That we get along better and work as a team,

With leaders who help us to learn how to play;

Teach us what’s right and make sure we obey.

clip_image006“We’ll have to make rules,” said Blub with a grin,

“But rules aren’t all bad, so let’s try to begin!”

“Okay,” said Shmuli: “No squashing my ball;

We must each bring a snack, and share it with all.”

“Sounds good,” said Blub – “this is going to be great,

Let’s go tell our friends; I really can’t wait!”

So they ran out and found lots of friends on the street

All of them happy to play ball and eat.

“But it’s my club,” said Shmuli, “and so I’m in charge,

And these rules all apply to kids small and large.

And that’s how we’ll all play, together as one;

Rules aren’t all bad – they can help us have fun!”

(picture credit this week goes to Elisheva – yup, the big kids are back, and she drew these spiffy illustrations on the spot when asked, poem unseen, to provide an image of two boys and a fish doing something sports-related together!)


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