Shemot – a Poem

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While researching for my previous post, I came across this beautiful poem by Zelda. Zelda Schneersohn Mishkovsky (June 20, 1914 – April 30, 1984), widely known as Zelda, was an Israeli poet. I find this poem contributes to our understanding of the concept of name and hope you like it too.

Each of Us Has a Name

by Zelda (trans. Marcia Falk)

Each of us has a name
given by God
and given by our parents

Each of us has a name
given by our stature and our smile
and given by what we wear

Each of us has a name
given by the mountains
and given by our walls

Each of us has a name
given by the stars
and given by our neighbors

Each of us has a name
given by our sins
and given by our longing

Each of us has a name
given by our enemies
and given by our love

Each of us has a name
given by our celebrations
and given by our work

Each of us has a name
given by the seasons
and given by our blindness

Each of us has a name
given by the sea
and given by
our death.

You can read more about Zelda on The Jewish Women Archive