Monday, May 19, 2008

Narcissus (Nazir 4b)

Said Shimon HaTsadik, "I never ate
The sacrifice of a Nazir but once:
A strapping youth with fair eyes, shoulders straight
Came to the Temple. There the lad confronts

Me. I say, "Son, why do you wish to shear
These curly locks that graze your neck? Pray tell!"
Says he: "I was a shepherd, south of here
I went to draw fresh water from a well--

"I leaned over the water, stricken dumb
By my reflection. 'Bum!' I cried, 'Forswear!
You'll end up as a worm! A tiny crumb!
Renounce your vanity. Shave off that hair!'

So no more Nezirut. My curls are God's."
"May there be many like you," Shimon nods.


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