The Seventy-Second

“If I am I because you are you, and you are you because I am I, then I am not I and you are not you. But if I am I because I am I, and you are you because you are you, then I am I and you are you.” – Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Kotzk

I stood atop a large stone near Cheyenne, Wyoming, threw seventy-one words into the air. They in turn broke into syllables, light strands born from phonetic care. The Northwest wind found its way from Horse Creek, from its bed on rye grass there, and it picked up the sound of my faltering tongue and helped it climb to heavens stairs. Beneath the arch of a streaked Cirrostratus, I saw the opening of a womb, and even though my eyes were closed on earth, I knew the birth of something would happen soon. Something caused me to quietly stutter, let the seventy-second verb commit, to fly its way onward toward the belly of the skyway to the ledges where angels sit. It was the dawning of a new day dawned, when a secret was paid on rent.

For in the terror of this mind of a boy inside a man, was an image of the prayer of host to sail on the seven winds. And the words they came in brokenness, the sounds from my dry, dry soul, in the sounds of a thousand nights gone by, when I thought myself not whole. With the chanting of all darkness-committed saying unto you, can you see he’s about to fold. It must have looked like danger for something sinister to abound, to see a ragged man of fifty-seven letting loose his vocal sounds. To stand upon the rock of that not known and leave his ego on the ground. To utter something in another tongue to let a craft come unbound. To reach inside the vale of my heart and cut the chords of the seventy-second found.

I stood atop a large stone near Cheyenne, Wyoming, and prayed in verbs without a noun. Prayed for your lonely shadows, that they would connect your mind somehow. Voiced my words for trouble consternation where the evil ebb does flow. I whirled the names into the air, with an unconscious cry, with the atoms of creation lining up by myside. I prayed for my family, a world that I do not know, and the when I stared into the womb of heaven my inward eyes did glow. For falling fast with angels, like lightning before the rain, came the kindness of the ancient one, in the ancient of its days. An energy unto itself with the universe at its display.

And it turned the seventy-second word the name of its command, burned itself into my soul from where the water from its hand ran. Came a knowledge that though I was dead in resurrection here I AM, came a small voice from deep inside me whispering from dusk to resurrection here I AM. – 04.23.2018 – דָּנִיֵּאל

90 thoughts on “The Seventy-Second

  1. “And it turned the seventy-second word the name of its command, burned itself into my soul from where the water from its hand ran. ” Every word is amazing, there is so much I want to say about this piece but right now I’m speechless! More later perhaps! 😉 ❤ Ruby

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  2. Daniel, I have to add my praise in here although it is similar to what I have already read in your comments section. I read this wonderful piece of prose and felt as if I was standing there with you on the first day of a new creation. Well done! Well done good sir!

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  3. Daniel this is masterful with its rich rhyming words and depth of spiritual meaning. As so much of your writing, it displays like a Psalm of David a cry and then a praise before your creator, who has enriched you with a talent that amazes me. Thank you.

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  4. Daniel,
    my brother, the Seventy-Second is full of the blessings of Hashem. It is linked in a special way to the wonderful relationship you enjoy with the “Ancient of Days”. I am proud to call you brother and friend, and I very much am blessed by what you have written here. Shalom, Den

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      • The power of words can be both deceptive and encouraging, and I am surprised and often underestimate how effective they are. Your words my brother hold their strength in compassion and encouragement for me. Shalom Den

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  5. Daniel, this is amazing, each word appears exactly as a personal prayer that means so much as I read it. I know we are of different faiths but still there appears a commonality in this verse that I or anyone no matter their faith can take hold of, identify and make it a part of their relationship with something greater, and with each other. Thank you.

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      • I agree, I think to much divisiveness is caused by the unhappiness of those who interfere with a single search of faith, trying to convince that the search is wrong.

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  6. My young friend, I have been moved to tears by your heartfelt words, and as so many have said I can say little, for these ancient holy words leave me speechless. Thank you. In admiration, Bill

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  7. Daniel,
    I just finished lunch with y Rabbi and during the course of lunch read her your post. We followed the reading up with a wonderful discussion on prayer. Your writing brings so much to so many people, I hope you know that. Thank you. ❤ 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. There was nothing soft nor gentle about this prayer Daniel, it was filled with sincere need, and the type of cry respected the most by that light which we seek. I doubt mine were the only eyes that were not kept dry as I identified with this lovely piece of prose. Thank you.

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  9. Dear Daniel, this is a remarkable piece. Your words are so vivid that they’ve brought the seven winds to life. There are so many layers within your writing, and multiple interpretations. Fascinating, here again is the idea of resurrection. Wishing you well. ~ Mia

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  10. I adore the opening quote. It makes me think of old rock songs, and defiance of being part of a herd of sheep. I get to be me! Well, I suppose I sound like a Lady from Whitby.
    I struggled, in part, to understand the meaning of 72. That 71 was flung askrew & came out 72 makes sense, but I’m missing something here.
    Anyway, Whitby awaits me. A party tonight?

    Liked by 1 person

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