Angelic voices sing the closing prayer of Yom Kippur
The Rabbi is also a a cantor , his voice seems to only grow stronger
Following the prayer in the prayer book to where men whose last names is *Cohen or a variation of that name whose ancestors priests of the temple go forward to pray, they cover themselves with the prayer shawl and stand at the front of the synagogue, by the Torah scrolls, this is the first time i notice this prayer. I am at awe at how ancient this connection is, people whose ancestors worked as priests in the great temple that stood in Jerusalem, where the temple mount is, thousands of years ago come forth and pray for the congregatation. I stand there amongst who are my sisters on this night, the closing prayer of Yom Kippur, watching a little girl with long black waves dancing twirling her white dress as the congregation sings and the Rabbi’s voice is still strong despite hours of prayers during fast. A young man blows on the ram’s horn struggling to make the sounds.. i look outside and see that the sky outside is dark.
The Rabbi promised 25 hours of being with G-D and so it was.
I go through the crowds and walk towards a table with juice and cookies and ask whether this is for adults as well, and a woman nods her head in agreement, no one smiles at me, no one talks to me, i take juice and a cookie, and the feeling of being part of the tribe is gone because i know i will be walking out alone, and no one says to me “have a good year”, i am a stranger once more, and i don’t say “have a good year” to anyone either, i just walk out , walking alone.
Our father, we call G’d but i feel like an orphan again …i walk out and notice the synagogue next to my home has just blown the horn , the people sing the song i just sang, “the next year in rebuilt Jerusalem “, the desks carry Coca Cola, the men gather around the table and someone serves drinks in paper cups, i want some but walk on with the dogs, and wonder where the women pray , i walk into the night and am filled with loneliness…i remark to the woman next to me how quickly life returns to normal, and she barks at me, “are you following me? are you watching me?” i notice that she is mentally ill, and i feel even worse for a while but by the time i cross the street to the park and walk towards the dog play ground i feel better, No one speaks to me and i speak to no one in particular, though i want to talk to someone so much , i look at the buildings around me, i see the well lit apartments and imagine people gathering around tables, i walk home and boil water and drink a soup in a cup, which is my dinner, being too tired to cook. I think about this moment and try to live it. I feed the dogs, and separate them, since one takes the other’s food unless a door separates them .I fall asleep on the couch reading a novel which carries me to a prison in Florida, though i am free, only a prisoner of my thoughts, which can release me or keep me in prison. I wake up and go to bed , the larger dog attempts to take over the bed, i tell her to get off the bed, and she grunts but obeys. I get into bed and listen to the Israeli radio interview one Rabbi after another , interpreting the bible and in between the words there are familiar songs. i try not to worry about tomorrow though it is here already, when i will return to work. I try to relax into sleep which i need in order to function …i close my eyes and return to the land of dreams where i am standing with someone next to me , a dream husband, and we attend some sort of concert in a library, a woman sings, and i float upon musical notes into another land, a land of dreams.
*The Priestly Blessing or priestly benediction, (Hebrew: ברכת כהנים; translit. birkat kohanim), also known in rabbinic literature as raising of the hands (Hebrew nesiat kapayim), or Dukhanen (Yiddish from the Hebrew word dukhan – platform – because the blessing is given from a raised rostrum), is a Hebrew prayer recited by Kohanim – the Hebrew Priests. According to Torah, they are descendants of Aaron the first High Priest, older brother of Moses and have been divinely chosen by God to work in the Tabernacle and assist the Israelites in blessings, ministering, sacrifices and atoning for their sins to God, for all eternity.
According to the Torah, Aaron blessed the people after offering sacrifices, and YHWH promises that “I will place my name on their hands” (the Kohanim’s hands) “and bless them” (the Jews receiving the blessing). The Jewish Sages stressed that although the priests are the ones carrying out the blessing, it is not them or the ceremonial practice of raising their hands that results in the blessing, but rather it is God’s desire that His blessing should be transferred by means of the Kohanim’s hands.
Even after the destruction of the second Hebrew Temple in Jerusalem, the practice has been continued in Jewish synagogues, and today in most Jewish communities, Kohanim bless the worshippers in the synagogue during special Jewish prayer services.