Reflections of a Parent
Bar/Bat Mitzvah by Harold M. Schulweis
It is over now
the chanting, the speech,
the candies, the gifts,
the band, the music,
It is the next day, the day beyond.
Now the real choice begins.
Now you are responsible, accountable
it is you who must choose.
Will you choose to live what you have spoken?
Or will those promises, rapturous sentiments
Waft aimlessly in the air, clinging to the ceiling of the synagogue?
The ceremony is over
will you shut the Book,
shelve the texts,
place premature closure on your growth?
Or will you continue to grow
in fidelity to our people,
in mastery of our culture?
Will you take your place
beside those who have sanctified the world,
Bring them the vitality of your youth,
Share with them the freshness of your promise?
It is over now,
You no longer face the congregation,
It is the day after and you stand alone
before the mirror of your soul.
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