Friday, July 08, 2011

Parsha Poem: Balak / בָּלָק

בְּמִדְבַּר / Bamidbar / Numbers 22:2-25:9: Read ithear it; colour it.

Printable PDF version here.

No parsha narrative overview this week, but I did create a cool FREE Parshas Balak printable, eReadable mini-book for early readers! 
Copywork and parsha activities available at this page – updated weekly.


From Pirkei Avos (Ethics of our Fathers) 5:6 –
“Ten things were created on the Sabbath eve at twilight. They are: the mouth of the earth [which swallowed Korach], the mouth of the well [which accompanied Israel], the mouth of the donkey [which rebuked Balaam], the rainbow, the Manna, the staff, the shamir worm, the script, the inscription, and the Tablets. Some say: also destructive spirits, the burial place of Moses, and the ram of our father Abraham. And some say, also tongs -- which are made with tongs."

(it’s in italics ‘cuz I didn’t write that part – it’s background!)

Ten things Hashem made in the time before time,
When His words made the world in reason and rhyme,
You might say they’re magic or simply bizarre,
Or maybe just jewels, shining from afar.

Ten things He created in fading-fast light,
Ten things before Shabbos descended that night,
Ten miracles, nissim, He’d already foretold,
Set into motion in the world He controlled.

For donkeys don’t usually sit up and talk,
Mostly, they sort of just stand there or walk,
So how did this happen in our parsha here,
That Bilam heard donkey words in his ear?

We know that Hashem doesn’t mess with His plan,
Created the world and Adam, the first man,
But sometimes, it’s urgent – an emergency,
He just needs a neis, to help people see.

Hashem’s not a magician, with tricks up his sleeve,
So how can he scheme things to help us believe?
Perhaps we’ve forgotten Hashem sees all things,
All places, all time, all that destiny brings.

History’s fine for commonplace folk,
But what of our tale of the donkey that spoke?
Those seeds were planted long, long before,
Along with nine others – yes, so many more.

The very first three are mouths opened wide:
Well’s, donkey’s, earth’s – with Korach inside.
There’s Moshe’s own staff and also his grave,
And many fine details of the luchos he gave.

And then there are tongs, no mystery why.
You need tongs to make them, so don’t even try.
Mysteries all of them, seeds planted deep,
Resting until Hashem called them from sleep.

Ten things Hashem made in the time before time,
When His words made the world in reason and rhyme,
You might say they’re magic or simply bizarre,
Or maybe just jewels, shining from afar.

Ten things He created in fading-fast light,
Ten things before Shabbos descended that night,
Ten miracles, nissim, He’d already foretold,
Set into motion in the world He controlled.

image


Now – a question.  I’m getting kind of excited, because (not that anybody is counting) I wrote my VERY FIRST parsha poem for Parshas Vaeschanan last year – July 22nd.  (Click here to read every single parsha poem.)

According to my records, that means there are THREE MORE TO GO!  (okay, I missed one the day after Shavuos, so FOUR)

Here are the questions: 

  • What should I do with them now???  And then…
  • What should I do next?

1 comment:

  1. That is awesome that you've almost written a whole Torah cycle of Parsha poems! (is that the correct term?) Writing even one is impressive, not to mention writing one each week (I've often wondered how you come up with them each week). I don't have any real ideas for what you should do next but you'll definitely want to keep them in a collection.

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