Thursday, February 22, 2007

hesped i gave at the levaya

My father knew everything
and what he didn't know
he wanted to

he got this from his mother
who was a teacher

my father noticed everything
and what he didn't notice
he knew he should have

he got this from his father
who was a detective

my father could fix everything
and what he couldn't fix
he knew someone who could

but i don't know where he got that from


i do not know everything
and frankly
there are certain subjects
that i have no interest
in knowing anything about
no matter how much he pushed me to explore them

i do not notice everything
i'm actually pretty oblivious
to most details of what's around me
it's amazing they actually let me drive
especially since i drive like my father
who also grew up in boropark
and he used to drive cabs

and i can't fix much
i used to know how computers worked
my father taught me that
until i went away to college and forgot it all
unlike him i have no idea
what goes on inside a car
or through telephone wires

this is what we call yeridat hadorot
diminution of generations

but my father took me out on the tidal flats of plum beach
during the winter
and up perkins drive on bear mountain
during the summer and the fall
and took me to build relationships
with friends and relatives
whether they were religious or observant
or not
jewish
or not
and him and my mother moved
from spring valley to west hempstead
and from west hempstead to brooklyn
so that me and my brother
could get a good jewish education

and my father taught me
to love God's world
and to love people
and to love yahadut

and i love him.

25 Comments:

Anonymous Jen said...

Oh Steg. That's beautiful. I'm sorry for your loss, but I'm glad you have such things to say.ht

2/22/2007 8:58 PM  
Anonymous Ezer K'negdo said...

I am so sorry for your loss. Hamakom yinachem etchem btoch sha'ar aveli tzion v'yirushalayim.

2/22/2007 9:27 PM  
Blogger The back of the hill said...

That's a beautiful tribute.

Keep a stiff upper lip, and be what he taught you to be.

2/23/2007 12:44 AM  
Blogger David Guttmann said...

והמלווין את המת אומרין לו לך בשלום, שנאמר "ואתה תבוא אל אבותיך, בשלום" (בראשית טו,טו).


Beautiful Hesped.

2/23/2007 6:20 AM  
Blogger Gil Student said...

Hamakom yenachem eschem besoch sha'ar evlei Tziyon vi-Yerushalayim

2/23/2007 6:53 AM  
Blogger Elie said...

That is just touching and perfect. Thank you for taking the time to share it with your blog friends.

Hamakom yenachem eschem b'soch shaar aveiley ziyon v'yerushalayim.

2/23/2007 11:17 AM  
Blogger PsychoToddler said...

That was a wonderful hesped, and much better than the one I delivered. Hamakom yenachem eschem btoch shaar avalay tzion veyirushalayim.

TTL

2/23/2007 11:22 AM  
Anonymous GoldaLeah said...

Beautiful. I am sorry to have come back to your blog after so long only to hear this news.

May his memory be a blessing, and may you feel him close to you.

2/23/2007 11:24 AM  
Blogger Lab Rab said...

Wish I could have been there. Keep strong my friend.

2/23/2007 2:11 PM  
Blogger Amishav said...

What a wonderful tribute to your father- he must have been a real inspiration to you. And to think of all that he gave you that enriches your life. You were blessed to know him. I'm sure its very hard for you now. You have my sympathies.

2/23/2007 2:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This was beautiful. Thank you for sharing with us some of who your father and all that he meant to you.
You're in my thoughts,
sarah b-f

2/24/2007 2:34 PM  
Blogger Mar Gavriel said...

I can't read this. It's making me cry.

2/24/2007 3:18 PM  
Anonymous rebecca m said...

that's beautiful.

and again, hamokom yinachem etchem...

2/24/2007 8:58 PM  
Blogger torontopearl said...

Beautiful hesped.

You elevated your father...because no doubt he helped to elevate you, to become the person you are today.

Your father should rest in peace, and may his neshama continue to have an aliya.

May you not know from further sorrow.

2/24/2007 11:26 PM  
Blogger Rabbi Joshua Maroof said...

Beautiful hesped, it brought tears to my eyes.

Hamaqom yinahem etchem betoch shar avelei tsion veyerushalayim.

Or, as we Sephardim say, min hashamayim tenuhamu.

2/25/2007 12:06 AM  
Blogger treppenwitz said...

The measure of the father can be found in his son. Your hesped reveals you to be worthy of the good name he left you.

Ani Mishtatef B'Tzarecha.

2/25/2007 9:02 AM  
Anonymous Soferet said...

בס’ד

This is so gorgeous, Steg, it breaks my heart a little. What a blessing that you should have had such a good dad that you can write like this about him. Not everyone is blessed with a good dad, so you're truly lucky, even though you must carry him with you now. You'll do right by his memory & make him proud of you, I know it.

with great care,
Avielah

2/25/2007 10:48 PM  
Blogger Shifra said...

Steg - You did good.
That was beautiful and simple, nostalgic and inspiring.

I'm proud of you.

2/26/2007 8:03 PM  
Anonymous Safranit said...

Beautifully written....

nothing else to say.

2/27/2007 12:25 PM  
Anonymous sarah m said...

your father sounds like a wonderful person.

though i knew you and alan had to come from somewhere

2/28/2007 12:09 AM  
Blogger Tzemach Atlas said...

Your father knew how to fix a carburetor but you know how to fix a blogroll. It is a chane not a yerida. Keep moving and going with your father inside you.

2/28/2007 7:27 AM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

thanks. sorry for the cut-n-paste reponse from the previous post, but after a weeks it's sort of hard to find things to say.

i waited until the shiva ended to respond, but i really appreciated all of your blogcomments, IMs, emails, phone messages and visits. thank you all so much.

2/28/2007 8:33 AM  
Anonymous Shmarya said...

Beautiful.

2/28/2007 8:43 AM  
Blogger SusQHB said...

that was beautiful. take care man.

2/28/2007 4:08 PM  
Blogger ALG said...

That is a beautiful hesped. You were lucky to have such a father and he was lucky to have such a son. Take care.

3/01/2007 7:33 PM  

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