Jewish Prayers From the Heart and Pen of Alden Solovy

Oh You Hills, Oh You Sands

SONY DSCThis piece came out of a meditation conducted on the sand dunes of the Arava, a rift valley in the southern Negev, by staff from Kibbutz Ketura and Ben Gurion University. The assignment: go off in silence to think about the desert and what it evokes. Then, after 20 minutes, write about it. To listen along, click on the triangle in the bar below. The text follows.

Oh You Hills, Oh You Sands
Speak to me
Oh you hills.
Did my father pass this way?
Did my mother draw water
From some secret well?
Did I dream of angels and blessings?
Or will the man I am
Wrestle all night
With the man
I am yet to be?

Speak to me
Oh you sands.
What ancient beauty have you captured?
What silent yearning springs up
To water my heart?
What treasures do you
Still hold dear?

Let me know the music of your valleys.
Let me hear the heart beat
Beneath your thousand stones.
Let me remember
The ancient promise of home.

Speak to me
From the place where
Desert and sky meet
In perfect silence,
In perfect wisdom,
In perfect love.

© 2011 Alden Solovy and All rights reserved.

Postscript: Here are additional prayers about Israel. For the sticklers among you, this photo was taken in Nachal Peres in the Negev near Masada, not in the Arava.

If you use this prayer, please click “like” on this page and subscribe. Please take a moment to post a link to your Facebook page, your blog or mention it in a tweet. Thanks. For usage guidelines and reprint permissions, see “Share the Prayer!

Photo credit: Alden Solovy


8 Responses to “Oh You Hills, Oh You Sands”

  1. Genevieve

    Thank you for sharing, Alden… This is so beautiful and I will long remember your first reading at the kibbutz, as well as your beautiful and emotional intro with Judith…

  2. faithfulwhistler

    Dear Alden, thank you for putting this up online. Hesitated to ask you about it, because a poem is such a personal way of expressing oneself. I think everyone who comes here will be touched reading it though.
    (Judith, OSP 2012)

  3. carolnemitz

    Your prayer takes me there….tears…..sharing on my fb page! Will include your copy-write line and a picture of Israel.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Basic HTML is allowed. Your email address will not be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS

%d bloggers like this: