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Freed to Fly


Bracha Goetz


“But what is the meaning of life?”

She said.

She had waited behind.

The rest walked out ahead.


“What do you think?” he asked her,

With a smile.

“I don’t know … To be good?”

She said, after awhile.


“But still how can I know,

What is really good?

That’s what I want to find out,

If I could.”


He scratched at his beard,

Then he said the words slowly.

They were so plain and simple,

It sounded flat, not holy.


“To be good,” he said,

“Throughout all your days,


Details the most ways.”


She had never liked details.

They were dry and a bore.

She wanted the big view you get

When you soar.


His words came with no drum roll,

Or mystical light,

Yet without knowing why,

They felt awfully right.


Mitzvot were the details,

That could keep her on course.

With directions in hand,

She could fly toward their Source.


Between Heaven and earth, she soars,

Steadied by strings,

Details guiding goodness,

No longer scared of her wings.


The rabbi hadn’t said much.

We never know what gets through.

Sometimes one boring word like “details”

Will do. 


Bracha Goetz is the author of 42 books that help children shine and a candid memoir for adults, Nourish the Soul: Filling the Emptiness Within, documenting her journey in Judaism: www.goetzbookshop.com


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