“Bones I see, dry and dead
A valley full,” Ezekiel said.
“Bones on bones, minus marrow
Bones that strayed from straight and narrow.”
“Oh Son of Man,” the Lord God said,
“Can these bones rise from their dry bed?”
“Only you know,” Ezekiel said.
“Only you can raise the dead.”
“Prophecy,” he heard God say.
“Prophecy this very day.
Tell the bones that they will live,
They will rise, for I will give
Them breath and sinew, give them flesh
And cover them with skin afresh.”
And prophecy Ezekiel did…
He had to do what he was bid.
There was a noise and a commotion
A funny sort of locomotion
As bone to bone came together
Joined with sinew as their tether.
Covered soon with flesh and skin
A brand new chapter could begin.
But first God must His breath infuse
Before these bones were living Jews.
These dry dead bones, our sages tell,
Were the House of Israel.
The day would come – regeneration,
Israel would live again – a nation.
And in our time, this prophecy
Has become reality.
The dry dead bones of Hitler’s hell
Rose in modern Israel
Came to life with breath of God
Upon the ancient, ancient sod.
With sinew torn from Chalutzim,
Torn from men who had a dream,
The dream that one day they’d fulfill
The vision of Ezekiel.
Not often is it to men given
To see fulfillment of a vision,
To see a modern growing land
Rebuilt upon its ancient sand.
Rebuilt upon the sands of time —
Israel — yours and mine.
To us of course, it’s like a dream
To Israelis it must seem
More like a nightmare as they stand
on every border, gun in hand.
Every daughter, every son
Fights a war – not lost, not won
To fight and fall and fight again
Again, again, and yet again.
Of enemies there’s been no dearth
Since the days of Israel’s birth.
And so we ask, “Oh God, what’s wrong?”
We want to sing a joyous song.
To bless Your Name and praise Your light
And see the end to endless night.
So why the constant warring Lord,
Is this Your people’s just reward,
For things are going from bad to worse.
Men don’t light candles, but rather curse
The darkness known as war and hate
And cry “Oh God, is this man’s fate?
Is the world so insane
You’ve given up on us in vain?”
When men of peace must live to fight,
When right is wrong and wrong is right,
When “You shall nots” have turned to “shall yous”
Making dry bones of our values
Then I fear, the world is mad.
Is there no prophet to be had?
But wait — I see prophets everywhere,
There and there and there and there.
There’s a prophet in every Jew
In you and you and you and you.
Stand up and shout so all will hear
No man should have to live in fear.
No man should live in poverty
No man should live in slavery
No man should ever have to kill
To save the vision of Ezekiel.
Shabbat Chol Hamoed Pesach
Thank you Sarah, for your story! “Inside Our Time” digital series: