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VCU Menorah Review Summer/Fall 2006
Number 65
For the Enrichment of Jewish Thought

More in than Out

By Richard E. Sherwin

its time to die quick
before all my friends are gone
and no one's left to
say kaddish for the rest of
my soul so irascible

here only worms writhe
as much --or is it maggots
cleaning away sins
and leaving me stripped down pure
and ready for atonement

its my mind not flesh
thats corrupt so at least earth
gets a decent meal
to repay the ones I skimmed
off so blithely as its son

the sons of heaven
skipped over my genes dishing
out hunks of soul stuff
and Ive gone hungry for God
all my lives disbelieving

the best I could do
was try and be decent to
those I stumbled on
along the way one foot on
banana peel one in graves

I nearly got more
friends in graveyards than out its
gotten so pretty
soon no one but God will call
me by my covenant names

Richard E. Sherwin is a professor of English (retired) at Bar Ilan University, Israel.

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