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Sample Poems

Bat Mitzvah Candle Lighting

One came from afar, another from near
They flew in from Florida, just to be here
They like the sun, they sure have fun
Aunt Irma and Aunt Esther, please come up and light candle number one

Another loved one who just couldn’t wait
Also flew in from the Sunshine State
She and Al showered love on their brood
Nanny, please come up and light candle number two

A second far-off grandparent couple
Told everyone they’d be here in a double
Spreading love for them is the key
Grandma Jean and Grandpa Shep, please come up and light candle number three

The South is where nothing could be finer
Then this aunt who hails from Carolina
She’s the turnaround queen of a franchise store
Aunt Carolyn, please come up and light candle number four

Yet another pair with an out-of-state bio
Is this vibrant duo from the state of Ohio
She cooks like a pro, he makes jazz come alive
Aunt Barbara and Uncle Doug, please come up and light candle number five

They just had a mitzvah of their own
He and Amy left no unturned stone
They welcome all, that’s how they get their kicks
Uncle Dan, please come up and light candle number six

He heals the sick and smooths the way
When patients need a brighter day
His Seders often last until eleven
Uncle Eric, please come up and light candle number seven

My folks thought two were quite enough
But when there’s six it’s gotta be tough
They’d be a hockey team if they all could skate
Cousins Rashi, Emunah, Esti and Ashi, please represent Akiva and Eitan, and come up and light candle number eight

Was it foreordained or was it by chance
That they can sing and act and dance
Their performance skills are oh, so fine
Cousins Lauren and Allison, please come up and light candle number nine

This girl and Ethan love their sports
They’re from the South, but came from the North
Like Tiger he’ll swing; like Beckham, she’ll bend
Cousin Arianna, please come up and light candle number 10

They made their marks at Golda Och
They wowed their peers, and that’s no shock
They’re on the ball, they’re always revvin’
Cousins Sophie, Talya and Oren, please come up and light candle number eleven

For a piggyback ride, I can count on my sister
When she goes off to college I’m gonna miss her
And her laptop, too, where I love to delve
Rachel, please come up and light candle number twelve

She gets us clothes and new Adidas
He corrects our grammar and takes us to Rita’s
It can’t be easy raising your teens
Mom and Dad, please come up and light candle number thirteen

I’m grateful that all of you could attend
And that includes every one of my friends
Come on up, you guys, so you can all be seen
Helping me light candle number fourteen

Wedding Rehearsal Dinner

Six years ago Scott worked at Studio One
He interviewed Aliza, her looks they did stun
She had just graduated from Quinnipiac
To woo her he needed a plan of attack

Scott had to convince her the firm wasn’t shady
And then persuade his boss to hire this lady
Though he had some kind of ulterior motive
It had to be her skills that the bosses took note of

Aliza got the job, and she was no shirker
And Scott was still attracted to his lovely co-worker
Scott worked hard, too, but he had nary a dollar
So he asked Aliza out for a game of Mancala

They soon turned it into an office romance
They ran, did yoga and bar-hopped and danced
A love affair that could not be mistaken
As they traveled to Paris and then Copenhagen

One day Scott gave Aliza a holler
It was time for another game of Mancala
He had a question which he wanted to float
But this time he wrote out a couple of notes

He hid the words under a few select stones
And what, may you ask, did the message intone?
When Aliza found them, she lit up with glee
In a few simple words: “Will you marry me?”

Running Club Holiday Party

As Joey B. was driving to the airport
He gulped his Gatorade, an entire quart
He was pretty confident he’d win the race
’Cause he had been training all these summer days
He could not imagine that he would be passed
He was a Clifton Roadrunner, he was Joey B. Fast

He used to burn up all the cinders at Clifton High
And leave the other runners all high and dry
But now he’s almost fifty, and he ain’t so young
It’s harder getting oxygen into his lungs
Even though his training had been less than thorough
He declared “I came to win” at Teterboro

Now Joey was a good boy, he would go to mass
But when he did confession he was all aghast
Unlike Mr. Thomas who would pick up quarters
Joey’s vice was boasting to the news reporters
Bragged he’d be the first to cross the finish line
Saying, Victory will be mine

70th Birthday Party

There once was a woman named Sara
If you didn’t know her, she’d scare yah
Her opinions are firm
And they might make you squirm
But then, she comes from the FDR era

It was October of 1-9-3-5
When she popped out, all fresh and alive
The champagne was uncorked
In old Flushing, New York
For the youngster, and that ain’t no jive

It turned out that Sara was smart
She took after Rose from the start
Faster than a DeLorean
She became valedictorian
And mastered the liberal art

But high school was all so prosaic
Which is why she soon left Weequahic
At Douglass they sassed her
So she transferred to Vassar
Where she felt very sure she could make it

After graduating, so as not to be harried
Sara did like the rest: she got married
But what was even more batty
Was the move to Cincinnati
A decision she was unable to parry

A few years later, some mirth
Erupted when Sara gave birth
The son smiled at the mother
So she went for another
And brought boy number two to the earth

Ohio was cool for a while
But she missed the Jersey lifestyle
So, when over an espresso
Hubby took a job with Esso
Irvington became their new domicile

Soon number three son arrived
In the winter of 1-9-6-5
And then another journey
On a hospital gurney
Resulted in the youngest — oh my!

Though a housewife, Sara wasn’t idle
She made sure her life would be vital
She was PTA head
And Cultural Arts chair, it’s said
And she never missed a recital

She was far from perfect, of course
She’d sometimes get on her high horse
She’d insist, with a clamor,
That we use proper grammar
So I’m told by a reliable source

For example, if we said: “Like, you know, man,”
She’d treat us as cold as a snowman
“Don’t talk slovenly,” she’d bark
Not even as a lark
Then she’d tell us just where we could go, man

She had a few favorite expressions
To employ for our many transgressions
If we had slow-moving feet
She’s snap, “Vite, vite, allez-vite!”
To make sure that we all learned our lessons

Another thing that she liked to say
Would be uttered when our meals were delayed
Just like a Parisian or a Berliner
We’d have “a stylishly late Continental dinner”
We’d grumble, but whatever it was, we ate

Sara’s cooking did not always hurt
Her cucumber salad was quite the perk
And her chili con carne
Could feed a small army
While for each diner she’d make a dessert

For news she’d read only The Times
To read anything else was a crime
And if a song contained words
It would never be heard
Whether we were at her house or mine

Her whimsical ways went outside
That prickly bush? It had to be tied
And cutting the grass
Was a pain in the arse
“Make sure you bag it,” she’d chide

She fancied herself quite athletic
But her fitness routine was pathetic
She proved quite a fright
On her exercise bike
And she almost needed a medic

It’s not that Sara was inactive
She soon returned to work, and the fact is
She did more than her share,
But she had to color her hair
To keep herself looking attractive

As the years went by, every son
Left the nest, and it wasn’t much fun
But Sara prevailed
Through all her travails
And always did what had to be done

In the Nineties the weddings began
Sara greeted the gals with élan
As the family expanded
She was always quite candid
That we visit as much as we can

The grandchildren soon tumbled out
They were feisty, and boy, could they shout
They’d push and they’d shove
To get Grandmother’s love
But the feeling was mutual, no doubt

We’re now up to the present time
Could Sara have mellowed like a fine wine?
Could it be serenity
Soothing her at seventy?
Nah — ’cause isn’t she still thirty-nine?