Wednesday, Feb 21, 2024

The Box

And so he thinks And contemplates “That box I put away Filled with last year's Kinnos Next year, I will not say”

He stuffed it in a corner

Where it would gather dust

And chained the box and locked it

To just sit there and rust


But soon it is

Just days away

And he is filled with fear

“Need I open up the box

To say Kinnos this year?


“And what, My friend

Might I just find

Now locked inside that box

Together with the Kinnos

That’s sealed with tape and locks?


“I’ll find the Kinnos

Wet again

With tears that drip anew

Another layer of tzaros

The pains of every Jew”


Together with those Kinnos

He thought he wouldn’t say

He’ll find a box of tzaros

A new one every day


Buried amongst the pages

The blood of Itamar

And children killed in accidents

The pain, the tears, the tzaar


Of buses hitting kinderlach

Or trucks that did not see

The boys who drowned

On tiyulim

So young, so pure, carefree


With terror never ceasing

His Kinnos box is filled

With worn-out lamentations

And new blood that is spilled


The gedolim who have left us

That pain is packed in there

From Cleveland to Bnei Brak

And so many right here

He thought that he

Would never need

Those Kinnos for this year


From young men

In their prime of life

All marbitzei Torah

And now on top of

Those pages

He’ll find Abuchatzeirah


And he’ll find

Sholom ben Rivka

Who’s languishing in jail

Awaiting miracles to come

That answer his appeal


And freshly packed

Inside the box

With Yirmiyahu’s tears

Sitting there

With days to go

He ponders as he fears


That box that’s

Filled with Kinnos

Will it somehow empty?

And as he thought

Perhaps this year

It now contains dear Leiby


And in his mind

He still has hope

The shofar blast will blow

And with it all the answers

The things he prays to know


For there is time

To open it

And find nothing there inside

The Kinnos and the tragedies

Will all manage to hide


And any question that he had

Is answered beautifully

For he shall see the glory of

The One Who’ll set us free



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