Mezuzah, or: The doorposts of thy house

A Shadorma

I recall
the scribe's quill pressing
into me;
marking me
with holy Torah verses-
ancient passages

I recall
being left to dry;
then rolled up;
plastic wrapped;
inserted into a case;
taken to my home

I recall
being affixed to
the doorpost;
to observe
all the comings and goings
of my family

I recall
the Jewish people's
eternal
commitment
to God's timeless Commandments,
in force to this day

W3 poetry prompt

This shadorma was written from the perspective of a mezuzah, a parchment with Torah verses, which traditionally hangs upon every doorpost of a Jewish home. This is a tradition I personally maintain, despite my lack of faith, for reasons of pride, culture, and sentimentality.

This week’s W3 poetry prompt is to write a poem in any style, using personification, from the perspective of a household object.


Let’s write poetry together!

When it comes to partnership, some humans can make their lives alone – it’s possible. But creatively, it’s more like painting: you can’t just use the same colours in every painting. It’s just not an option. You can’t take the same photograph every time and live with art forms with no differences.

Ben Harper (b. 1969)

Would you like to create poetry with me and have a completed poem of yours featured here at the Skeptic’s Kaddish? I am very excited to have launched the ‘Poetry Partners’ initiative and am looking forward to meeting and creating with you… Check it out!

52 thoughts on “Mezuzah, or: The doorposts of thy house”

          1. Possibly the result of systematically going against structure….(this not having anything on my door. Never thought of it, tho). Thank you for a great read.

  1. Wonderfully penned, David. Iโ€™ve written stories from an objectโ€™s perspective, but never a poem. Something to think aboutโ€ฆ๐Ÿ’œ

  2. The previous tenants of my current apartment left their mezuzahs behind. It felt so wrong to me…they were carefully removed and entrusted to Nina. (K)

        1. au contraire! there’s a religious issue with taking them down (although rabbinic opinions do vary, particularly when the incoming tenants aren’t Jewish)

          but, of course, I see why you would feel this way – it’s totally natural. it feels weird to leave them behind.

          1. So they belong to the house rather than its occupants? I would still feel awkward because it’s not my religious tradition. It would somehow make the apartment not mine. (I know–strange)

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