My Garden

Yosef Kaufmann
Creative 2020 / Finalists


On the 10th of Shevat, 1951, the Lubavitcher Rebbe gave a groundbreaking maamer (chassidic discourse) as He accepted the leadership of the Lubavich movement. In the talk, entitled Basi Legani, the Rebbe laid out the mission for our generation. The Rebbe explained how Gds Divine Presence – the Shechina, was originally in this world. However through the sins of Adam and Eve, and the subsequent generations, the Shechina was pushed higher into the heavens, and further from this world. The Rebbe goes on to explain how we have the power as the seventh generation to bring the Shechina back down to this world. To do that by overcoming our mundane desires and to transform them to holiness. And to use our abilities to have a ‘shtus dekedusha’ a “holy insanity” to accomplish this task. This is our mission and the purpose of the creation of the world.

The issue that my poem is addressing, is the fact that so many of us get caught up, and bogged down in mundane life, and lose focus of why we are here. Victor Frankl once said “Life is never made unbearable by circumstances, but only by lack of meaning and purpose.” If we can live a little higher, and refocus and live by the purpose that we are here for, not only will we fulfill that purpose, but we will be happier and more fulfilled.

My Garden

Come to my garden, my sister my bride
Follow me there with your eyes open wide
For there are the flowers of yellow and blue
The tapestry painted a glorious hue
A place to delight in, to claim as my own
A place to reveal my terrestrial throne
A place for my queen to revel and dance
A place to call home if given the chance

I’ve come to your garden my husband my groom
I’ve seen all the flowers in glorious bloom
I’ll turn this ambrosial site to a home
That your majesty’s presence no longer shall roam
A place to delight in, I’ll transform the view
A place to to reveal, how the whole world is You
A place for your essence to come down and sing
A place for your palace, an abode for the king

I gave you my garden my sister my bride
But now it lies fallow unfit to reside
The lilies and lilacs, supplanted with weeds
Covered in filth, on account of your deeds
Higher and further you chased me away
Your folly and lies, led you to betray
You chose to ignore me, for pleasure and greed
Pushed me to withdraw, caused me to secede

I’ve neglected your garden my husband, my groom
From laughter and song, now comes sadness and gloom
The beauty the grandeur, once a marvelous sight
Is now covered in darkness, for you’ve hidden your light
Come back to your home, I beg and I plead
Allow me the chance, it’s all that I need
I’ll refine your garden exceeding the past
And this time together we’ll plant it to last

To rebuild my garden, my sister my bride
The power is yours, I’ve provided the guide
For you are beloved, in precious esteem
For only the seventh can truly redeem
To return once more, is all that I crave
It’s all in your hands how you choose to behave
So dig deep within, do all that you must
For that is the way to rebuild our trust

I’ll rebuild your garden, my husband, my groom
Once again lilies and lilacs will bloom
I’ll transform my folly from darkness to light
Above and beyond, for your holy delight
I’ll banish my ego, dispel my greed
My choices and actions, no more shall impede
All that I do will be to reveal
How Your Heavenly presence, is all that is real

I’ve come back to my garden my sister my bride
You cannot imagine my pleasure, my pride
Come sing with me, together we’ll go
Eternally bound, in this garden aglow
My place to delight in, you’ve made as my own
My place you revealed my terrestrial throne
My place where the queen now revels in song
My place I call home, my place I belong