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Chava Tombosky Headshot

Upside Down, a Passover Poem

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Quiet the volume and listen to the noise
Underneath the veins of the city that's alive
art cries through the mouths of starving folk
songs cry through the vocals pleading hope

Time is running, running, running
and the trains are coming, coming, coming

And we wait for a new day to come
and we wait for a new tune to hum
and we play our eyes across the train
drifting, drifting,
failing to notice we must be all the same

But time is running, running, running
and the trains are coming, coming, coming

Doors revolve like a universal sphere
tolls are paid and our pockets empty bear
our backs are turned to the hungry that wait
yet they keep on singing
under the subway pleading,
our heels grinding to the cement floor
never entertaining there could be more

And time is running, running fast
and the clocks keep ticking ticking past

Artists, Bankers, Wall street brokers,
geeks, thinkers, homeless, floaters
every color, all God's creatures breathe in the same raw air
weaving side by side
eating ride by ride
dozing half alive
intimate, organic, primal connection
all ignoring the world's intention

And we keep riding, riding, riding fast
as the clocks keep ticking, ticking past

Through the night and half past dawn
at last a lone voice encroaches on
upside down he sees the world
riding past him like a tornado twirls
the masses fail to stop and search who
as the vocalist tries to force time to stand still
even the riders cannot change his will
he chants like he has all the time to pass
looking searching feeling fast
an amphitropous exposé
he begs the world to see like he

and the folks cease staring ahead like sheep
and soon their minds begin to peek
the riders stop one by one
as time finally halts mid-air
the lone voice sings a familiar dare
of hope and loss and resonating despair
and he promises the riders through his voice of emotion
that it can get better if we utter commotion
and the dollars roll out one by one
clapping, tears, and joys are sung
the moment is paused it transforms disarray
as a virtue emerges to light that day

Although the clocks tic tic tock
and the hustle and bustle does not seem to stop
we can carve a moment out of clay
like a work of art, a Van Gogh, or Monet.
We can listen to
the pulse of our hearts and the routine beats
that pass one by one or we can pause at our feet.
We can view the beauty we share
and realize there is much more to bear
than the economic treadmill of exhaustion we climb
or the disappointment or diminished pay check tossed
trade material deprived for sublime instead of loss.

We can take the time to transform our space,
lend a penny, or a smile or a tune against the race.
We can change our world and stop the time
we can enlighten ourselves and dare to climb
upside down like the man standing on his head
seeing the colors the music instead
and before we even realize we will be higher and higher,
a holy space will encompass something new will transpire
hold our hands together and create abundance all around
break free from the shackles
and listen
to
the
sound.

Have a Happy Passover
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