Praying In Muir Woods – Dan Ornstein

There in the sylvan,
soaring shul, they leaf
through their siddurim,
waiting to get ten.

“I’m here, let’s begin,”
I say, craning my neck
at them, rough and red-faced.
They won’t count me in.

One whispers to his ancient friends,
“‘Is man a tree of the field?’
or should it be said
‘A tree of the field is man!’”*

*Deuteronomy 20:19

Dan Ornstein is rabbi at Congregation Ohav Shalom and a writer living with his family in Albany, New York.