Rereading the Stories: Moshe's Goodbye
Clambering up the Cold Mountain path,
The Cold Mountain trail goes on and on:
The long gorge choked with scree and boulders,
The wide creek, the mist-blurred grass.
The moss is slippery, though there’s been no rain.
The pine sings, but there’s no wind.
Who can leap the world’s ties
And sit with me among the white clouds?
Perhaps we can read Moshe’s farewell as an invitation to “leap the world’s ties
and sit with me among the white clouds”. Even as he reviews 40 years, sprinkled with some stinging rebukes, Moses offers a different view of many events with which we are familiar.
He does not mention Jethro as he retells the story of the appointment of judges. Moses admits to his disappointment with the people for accepting Jethro’s idea, and, by so ding, rejecting him.
He retells the story of the spies from a completely different angle.
Moses is inviting the Children of Israel, and us, to leap the world’s ties and sit with him among the white clouds and examine the stories of our lives from his place among the clouds.
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