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what do you do with your sins if the day of atonement is long gone? - Tova Greene

ever since i fucked a girl in rabbinical

school the jewishness i once knew

poured out of me like the ten plagues

on seder plates. i don’t attend synagogue


anymore. now i can only cry at night but

i can weep in the mornings. i write poetry

because i learned god spoke to us in verse.

i take off my shoes when crossing


the street as any land, no matter how

filthy, can be consecrated ground. instead

of pus the blisters on my feet are full of

salt water from the passover table. they


trickle down to the apex of battery park.

i believe that moses splitting the red sea

felt not unlike watching manhattan

unknowingly separate the east river from


the hudson. it is strange indeed to be reminded

of bereshit every i write my name. this year i

ignored the holiest of our days. on yom kippur

my aunt texted me to forgive her for what she


had done wrong throughout the year. that’s

the strange thing about being a jew. even if

you haven’t talked to someone for months,

you’re supposed to innately know their sins.


 

TOVA G. (they/them) is a non-binary, queer, jewish poet who specializes in the intersection between twentieth century poetics, dramatic literature, & ancient greek & roman antiquity at sarah lawrence college in yonkers, new york. they work often with the poetry society of new york. their work has been featured in the eunoia review, midway journal, love and squalor, clickbait, and primavera zine. they currently live in fidi in manhattan with their partner and cat. they work in midtown at the museum of sex.

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