Blessing beforehand is easy.
Praises spill out when the table is set,
bounty before us, still untouched.
Gratitude pours freely from hungry lips.

Blessed is the Place where steaming
matzoh balls await.
Blessed is the Source of countless kugels.
Blessed is the chicken and the egg,
the tender stewed chicken with preserved lemons
and the smoky slow-cooked huevos haminados
and the Was/Is/Will Be that entwine the two.

Our collective instinct,
like some ancestral muscle memory,
compels us to thank before we take

Afterwards, all bets are off.
It’s not difficult to slink off sated;
to remove ourselves quickly from the matzoh crumbs,
the stray macaroon and the haroset-stained table;
to slip past Elijah when the door is opened
not look back.
To make like the sea
and split.
So long,

What greater service is there then
than letting go of this
newly found freedom,
our miraculous ability
to get up and go
and, instead,
to make the choice,
to pick up
another glass
and give thanks
for that which
just was.