By John Hertz: (reprinted from No Direction Home 32) In the present season – in 2019 the New Year on the Jewish religious calendar began at sundown on 29 Sep, followed by Ten Days of Repentance, and Atonement Day beginning at sundown on 8 Oct (it’s a lunar-solar calendar adjusted by a leap month, so the dates shift back and forth on the secular i.e. Gregorian calendar) – I sometimes see this poem, attributed to Judy Chicago (1939- ) and said to be from 1979.
A Poem Praying for Us Then and Them Right NowAnd then all of what has divided us will merge.
And then compassion will be wedded to power.
And then softness will come to a world that is often harsh and unkind.
And then both women and men will be gentle.
And then both men and women will be strong.
And then no other person will be subject to another’s will.
And then all will be rich and varied.
And then all will share equally in the earth’s abundance.
And then all will care for the sick and the weak and the old.
And then all will nourish the young.
And then all will cherish life’s creatures.
And then all will live in harmony with each other and the earth.
And then everywhere will be called Eden once again.
It appears elsewhen too. Maybe I should add elsefaith; I’ve seen it among Christians.
At the moment I have three scholarly questions to pursue. The title does not always appear. The word “often” does not always appear. When it is omitted – so maybe these are just two questions – a further line appears after “And then all will be rich and free and varied”: “And then the greed of some will give way to the needs of many.” I’m not sure about the title; I think often, greed and need, matter.