Autumn speaks to me in multicolored voices. First, it whispers hope in majestic gold words of new beginnings, caressing my soft skin with celestial zephyrs and a cosmic kiss from my G-d, Hashem. This is the autumn of my youth, my innocent childhood that beckons me with endless longing and nostalgia, without violence or malice, without the masks of sin. Autumn’s first voice feeds me hope, an antediluvian feeling that all is good.
Autumn shrieks orange-yellow-and-red sacrifice, the holy voices of faith. And I remember the biblical story of G-d and Abraham. The omnipotent Almighty commanded Abraham to kill his son Isaac. In an act of faith, Abraham took Isaac to Mount Moriah. There, he bound his son. As he lifted his knife to sacrifice Isaac, an angel cried out and stopped Abraham from killing his son. Abraham freed Isaac and slaughtered a ram instead. Now, autumn’s loud, potent voice of mercy reminds me that on Rosh Hashanah, a holy man blows the ram’s horn, the shofar. In my adolescence, I used to listen to the holy explosions. And the beautiful hypnotic blasts moved my soul, launching me on a journey to G-d. Today, autumn’s second voice feeds me faith. And I trust Hashem, my G-d, all-loving and omnipotent.
Autumn howls in the never-ending moment of mourning, wailing loudly throughout the dark day and night of unbearable sorrow-the timeless day of soul-shattering evil. It wears death and in a grotesque metamorphosis, its enchanting multicolored leaves have turned pitch-black. My soul vanished when the Twin Towers exploded-imploded and human debris sailed to earth in a cloud of toxic dust. Autumn’s third voice eats my hope and faith again and again in perpetual trauma. It is the autumn of my adulthood that eats my lost soul, buried in the catacombs of despair. Yet slowly, I heal, as I listen once more to the autumn voices of my childhood and adolescence.
Autumn whispers hope, shrieks faith, and howls despair. I lost my soul but found it in the autumn voices of my distant past. Long ago, I was close to my G-d, Hashem. Now, He waits for the man to relearn the secrets of the child. Listen! Autumn speaks in multicolored voices, as sweet as the mellifluous colors of hope and faith. The leaves fall, wafting on zephyrs. Time slips away, like ballet dancers pirouetting and whirling into the past. And I travel through the labyrinth of my psyche, past a gifted violinist playing holy music on a Stradivarius and a passionate artist painting the Tree of Life. But if you listen to the vast silence of the Void, you will hear the sound of my tears as I approach Yesterday and Hashem, my G-d. A child once more, I listen to the holy man shriek faith with each blast of the shofar. And the Shem Ha-M’forash (The Ineffable Name) covers me with a blanket of love, breathing soul into my being with a cosmic kiss. Now, I love through the endless day and night of my existence as the leaves fall and autumn voices speak.