“Snow in Jerusalem” by Jerry Mazza

Jerry Mazza


Reports the New York Times,
Israeli and Palestinian
children stake out positions
along main roads and rooftops,
wait for the unsuspecting
and cut loose with snowballs.
And in the silence of fallen
whiteness, laughter echoes,
not gunfire, and schools
are closed, and peace is tasted
like the fat flakes, heavenly
host of the sky, by men
in black who pray at the wall
and others the Dome of the Rock.
One foot of slushy snow
dampens the check point guards,
the would-be marauders, bombers,
snipers and anti-snipers,
quenching a thirst for peace
deep as the desert’s for water.
Oh weathering miracle,
would that a blizzard followed,
forty days and nights
of snow’s flood, not blood, to lift
the animals, men, women
and children in holy two’s
to some Goshen of the spirit,
where all were one, oh naive
singer, and not cloven
like the devil’s hooves,
but dancing in a circle of white
like snowmen with Semite noses,
turning in a gyre
towards a history beyond
the simmering landscape’s pyre.

from Rattle #20, Winter 2003
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