Fragments of language and story extracted from the body
~by Temim Fruchter
Nine Other Prayers
Please let this never stop.
Because it’s not like breathing or walking I had to learn to pray. Because I am made of thighs and wine and restless ancestors I didn’t have to learn too much. We were girls modest at school and we swayed, we shuckled, not because they told us to, not because of choreography – though there was choreography – but because the bodies centuries behind our bodies made urgency of singing. This has made it harder for generations since to stand still.
I can’t stand still now. Born a swish of soft denim skirt, blunt rebound plastic orange chair to the backs of waking legs, yawning big for more air than the day school ceiling would allow. The swing of prayer comes easy and I am not graceful. I think desert wanderers, loop dancers, sea crossers, escape artists. I think irreverent scientists, ecstatic rabbis, clumsy angels, elderly acrobats. I hear the cotton morning voices of girls, some loud, some whisper, some cough and some sigh. One is deep and one is thin like a weedy pond. I hear and I think they hear me back. Continue reading