Rosh Hashana

September 30, 2019

A beautiful Rosh Hashana to all. The invitation this day can offer regardless of religious identity, is to consider what it means to be renewed and revived. With that spirit, I give you this wonderful, though not for the faint of heart, poem that so powerfully expresses one way a person might celebrate.

The Birthday of the World

By Marge Piercy


On the birthday of the world

I begin to contemplate

what I have done and left

undone, but this year

not so much rebuilding


of my perennially damaged

psyche, shoring up eroding

friendships, digging out

stumps of old resentments

that refuse to rot on their own.


No, this year I want to call

myself to task for what

I have done and not done

for peace. How much have

I dared in opposition?


How much have I put

on the line for freedom?

For mine and others?

As these freedoms are pared,

sliced and diced, where


have I spoken out? Who

have I tried to move? In

this holy season, I stand

self-convicted of sloth

in a time when lies choke


the mind and rhetoric

bends reason to slithering

choking pythons. Here

I stand before the gates

opening, the fire dazzling


my eyes, and as I approach

what judges me, I judge

myself. Give me weapons

of minute destruction. Let

my words turn into sparks.

Charlie Spencer, Head of School
Contact Charlie: Email
Phone: 413-773-1700
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