Platonic Israel – a poem by Andrea Kibel

Platonic Israel

It was with trepidation that I leapt
across the ocean to the desert sand
for which I had myself not even wept,
since I was foreign to the holy land.

Ancestral shores aren’t real to those who roam
awash in all the nations’ ageless squall;
we’ve lost our memories of hearth and home;
diaspora makes strangers of us all.

But special is the gladness of return
for those who’ve never tasted Zion’s air,
who can distill each joy for which we yearn
into a common dream to carry there.

Meanwhile, our God is blind to place of birth;
the true Jerusalem is not on Earth.

Andrea Kibel is a new poet and 24-year-old graduate student in biology. A child of immigrants from South Africa and Zimbabwe, she grew up in the redwoods of California’s Santa Cruz mountains before studying in Dallas, TX and South Bend, Indiana. Andrea draws on science and nature, strangeness and isolation, and Jewish experience and imagery to create poems ranging from free verse to blank verse and sonnets.

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