in the evening sky
I caught sight of an arcing sliver of moon;
I hung my hopes on that
thin white ledge clinging to
a larger dark circle I could discern
only in outline
having lost track of our time,
I wondered: had the month just begun
or just ended
and in the coming nights
would I see more of you
or would you disappear entirely from me?
The instant of the moon’s “rebirth” at the start of each Jewish month, when the first glimmer of the orb’s edge is visible from Jerusalem, is known as the “molad.” Of course, the molad also marks the conclusion of the past lunar cycle and, as such, represents a dichotomous moment that is simultaneously completion and inception. Above is a poem by Yossi Huttler, a prosecutor and oral historian living in Staten Island.