August 17, 2011
Opinion: Homeward bound
I come to a land that calls me home
Pulled in by the suns of August.
On each visit, the eyes utter the same words:
Electric. Messy. Miracle.
This time, I’m told: things are changing.
A bigger mess?
Look for the signs, my friend says.
Go to Rothschild and look for them.
Not the tents or the people.
They are all in Hebrew.
Israel is speaking to itself, once again.
They’re protesting in Hebrew
Not in Hasbara.
They’re worrying about Holon
They have awoken from twenty lost years.
Twenty years of peace mirrors
Of marching for nothing
Of looking at the World
Of “security first.”
Twenty years of two-state hypnosis
Of land for war
Of IDF Rebbes
Of wasted poems
Of “security only.”
While the people were dreaming
Knesset fear merchants were happily scheming.
The tycoons free to gobble up banks, media
Supermarkets and much of the country
The people too dizzy to see.
But every scream must find a mouth.
Even the heart of a cynic beats.
The Jewish people will be “masters of their own fate”
As was promised on our day of birth.
Cottage cheese woke the people up.
The people were broke, and breaking.
Can’t afford my landlord.
Can’t look at my overdraft.
Can’t afford to drive my car
Or put the kids in day care.
My vote’s been stolen
By the fake heroes in Volvos.
Who can remember where we left our future?
Still no peace — only a miracle in pieces.
Crazy gaps everywhere.
Workers subsidizing schnorrers.
Those in green defending; those in black learning.
Hoarding in the Towers; sweating in the streets.
The elite can build while the poor can leave.
Jews can’t dream any better than this?
Off to Rothschild they trekked
Half a million strangers reintroducing themselves.
Sushi eaters, chakchouka eaters
Mothers, strollers, comedians, professors
Settlers, anarchists, laborers, Saturday nighters
Pitching their tents in a shouk of causes
Marching, sleeping, singing, arguing
Reclaiming the miracle
Leading a nation back to renewal.
The innocents have returned
And the cynics are stuck in reverse.
In the outdoor salons of the shouk of causes
It is the merchants of meaning who rule.
Look at the fear peddlers now
Running for cover — scrambling behind their blue ribbons.
Reform or not, it is already the morning after.
The people are back in the desert
And they won’t settle for fool’s gold.
The Israelites are in tents — and Israel is coming home.