Elul: 50 Shades of Black

I know you, you’re that new guy in shul,

praying slowly and intently line by line.

But I will give you no respect,

’cause your hat’s just not as black as mine.

 

You do not shush yet you do not talk,

waving your hands like a circus mime.

Even so I won’t be nice,

’cause your hat’s just not as black as mine.

 

The beggers come in for some change,

and I see you give them each a dime.

But I will give you no respect,

’cause your hat’s just not as black as mine.

 

You bring your kids to sit next to you,

While mine are playing the entire time.

But mine go to the real yeshivah,

oh, and your hat’s just not as black as mine.

 

And when I see you at the store,

I hide in the aisles and jump between lines.

You begin to notice my odd behavior,

(even though your hat’s not as black like mine).

 

One day you come over to shake my hand,

wish me well and be so kind.

But that doesn’t impress me one little bit,

’cause your hat’s just not as black as mine.

 

Eventually, you approach and ask me point-blank,

“What did I do to offend you, what is my crime?”

But I just smirk and head for the door,

’cause your hat’s just not as black as mine.

 

I tell all my friends that you’re not really frum,

my primary objective is to hurt and malign.

Your daughters will end up with husbands who work,

’cause your hat’s just not as black as mine.

 

I tell them in shul not to give you a kibbud,

you’re just like a goy and we can’t drink your wine.

I make sure you’re on no invitation list,

’cause your hat’s just not as black as mine.

 

“What a loser!” I laugh about you to myself,

you’re just a ba’al teshuva with no true bloodline.

Like a Hogwart’s Slytherin, true to form,

I curse you ’cause it’s not black like mine.

 

I don’t even bother to see the real you,

instead I spread tales of your deficient hemline.

If only I knew until yesterday you ate bacon,

perhaps I would give you a little more time.

 

We all dress up in different ways,

some with a gartel and some with a tie.

Some don’t even wear a jacket at all!

We are in no place to judge, it’s really all fine.

 

‘Cause when you judge,

you may just find,

that it’s really you,

who’s hat’s not fine.

 

We can’t expect to change overnight,

it will take long and it will take time.

But eventually, it won’t matter that,

your hat’s blue or gray, not black like mine.

 

Or maybe — *gasp* — you don’t wear one at all!

We ought really take this as a sign.

That we all serve God in our own little ways,

even though everyone’s hat’s not as black as mine.

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