A New Year

Rosh Hashanah, which this year occurs from September 12 to 14, is the start of a new year in the Jewish tradition, a time both of reflection, atonement, and hope. The ram’s horn (mentioned in the poem by Marge Piercy, below) is seen by some to be symbolic of repentance. One of the ritual foods of Rosh Hashanah is apples dipped in honey.

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Coming to the new year, I am picked
up like the ancient ram’s horn to sound
over the congregation of people and beetles,
of pines, whales, marshawks and asters.

Then I am dropped into the factory of words
to turn my little wheels and grind my own
edges, back on piece work again, knowing
there is no justice we don’t make daily

like bread and love…

-from “The Ram’s Horn Sounding”, by Marge Piercy
(Available Light, Knopf 1994)

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