Where is the Jewish Workplace? – A Poem

November 16, 2012
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Where does the Jewish workplace lie?

Is it in the heart or high in the sky?

Does it begin with morning’s bell?

Or was it when Goliath fell?
Can it be found on hearth so warm?

Can we skip out when feeling forlorn?

Does duty extend to every man?

Or just those in the Jewish clan?
Are all our tasks in the Torah scroll?

Or are there more, soon to unfold?

Should our efforts be a part of a plan?

Or just to do each bit, whenever we can?
Should focus be for children, elderly, hungry, the sick?

Or with Wall Street’s clocks going tick, tick, tick?

Is it all about us, or about the other?

Family, son, nephew, or brother?
Should roles be different between man and wife?

Try many things, or just one for life?

Is work something done at a place?

And should your effort show on your face?
Should you always keep a smile, no matter what?

Whether it’s easy, or nail grinding tough?

Is ours the path of peace, or war?

Which will open or close our doors?
Maybe the work places number three?

One each for heart, mind, and body?

If that is so can we clock in at once?

Or must we space them out across the month?
Can one person even do so much?

Cultivate the spirit and still buy lunch?

Well, well, that’s our fate – what we must do,

Part of the job of being a Jew.

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Lee Frankel-Goldwater is a professional environmental educator, writer, and social good project developer as well as a recent graduate of NYU's Environmental Conservation Education masters program. Lee has also studied at the Center for Creative Ecology on Kibbutz Lotan, Israel and at the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies. Currently he has been leading development of the Global Action Classroom, an Earth Child Institute initiative focused on global youth environmental cooperation and helping to create the Global Sustainability Fellows, a program of The Sustainability Laboratory seeking to design a new and innovative, international sustainability masters program. Other projects include: developing mobile applications for encouraging social action, mixed media video design, leading peace and environmental education workshops, and doing his best to live a life in connection with the Earth while helping others to do the same. At heart Lee is a poet, traveler, musician, and philosopher with a deep curiosity for new experiences, unfamiliar cultures, learning languages, and often dancing to the beat of a different drummer. As student of yoga, meditation, and spiritual arts, Lee aims to connect the inner journey with the outer one, hoping, as he can, to share what is learned along the way, enjoying the journey.

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