Saturday, May 25, 2024

Old Man of the Mountain

Taking a vacation Somewhere way up north The dark of night upon me In travels back and forth And suddenly I saw a light A small sign beckoned me An old inn stood there In the black A sign said, “Vacancy”

It was a quaint

But regal place

Its entrance was quite vast

A presence quite Victorian

When wealthy ruled the past


And as I entered

The main room

About to book a stay

A large framed picture

On the wall

Just blew me away


Almost looking at me

His eyes seemed full of pain

But that warm face

Was comforting

It struck a special vein


He stood behind this counter

A hundred years ago

“Who was this man?”

I wondered

No one will ever know


He must have worked

In this hotel

I questioned what he did

But clearly from the picture

I saw a pious Yid


I saw the great white beard he had

The peyos by his ears

I saw the eyes

That longed for hope

About to fill with tears


I think his eyes

And his whole heart

Did long for his old town

The system of

This great new world

Had surely let him down


Perhaps he was a refugee

From Czar Nikolai’s decrees

Who landed stuck

A lonesome Jew

A life filled with unease


He worried for his children

How they would turn out later

Growing up

Here in Vermont

Without a proper cheder


What have become

Of Jews like him

So pious and so pure

And yet so lost

In this free land

To raise a future dor


Thrust in a world

That gave him hope

Yet many tests to pass

And for the multitudes

Of them

Their future did not last


Behind the desk

Of this hotel

In the Land of the Free

But in his heart

He asks himself

“Where do I want to be?”


In the tears

Of loneliness

I see within his face

I see a man who’s truly lost

For this is not his place



Our journey

In comfort in this land

The pain inside

Is something that

We only understand


Perhaps we are so lucky now

We have all that we want

But till we really

Come back home

We know it’s all Vermont



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