Chanukah 2017

Each year I come to the candles on the menorah to bring light.  Each candle represents a different energy.  This tradition started many years ago my Rabbi, Ted Falcon was the Congregational Rabbi at Bet Alef.  He got the community together and we found energies for each of the eight candles.  Through the years I have personalized the configuration.  If you are lighting this year I hope you will find your energies that will bring light.  The energy needed most comes first because you light that candle eight times…then the rest are 7, 6, 5 and so on.

This year the word of Bessel Van der Kolk haunt me.  He said, “Love is the source of all trauma.”  As I look at our world and the trauma we are facing as a planet and as it’s citizens I couldn’t agree more.  So LOVE will be the first candle, the candle tonight.

Here are my energies for the eight nights.

First night…         Love

Second night…  Healing

Third night…       Peace

Fourth night…    Health

Fifth night…        Forgiveness

Sixth night…       Family

Seven night …    Community

Eight night  …     Gratitude


What are yours?


Happy Chanukah with love, blessings and light.

Zack Hoffman 2017

Last Two Haiku’s and More

I made it to the finish line.  30 Haiku’s in 30 days.  They will follow.  It was a wonderful exercise and I may not be the great Haiku artist but I do understand the form.

I have returned again to the book “Spark Joy” by Marie Kondo.  The book is about organizing and getting enjoyment out of the things that surround you.  I have re-read the section on paper and am working on cleaning.   I have numerous spiral notebooks because I like to write long hand.  I am going through the notebooks and taking the joy and shredding the rest.  I call this “The Dig”.

I am also going through old paperwork and have unearthed some old poems.  I am going to post two of them.  The poems are non-apologetically unedited.  The first from my first class in Poetry at LA Valley College in 1972 and the second from a poetry writing spurt in 1995.

But first… Haiku

Day 29

embolden cat leaped

onto the kitchen table

fearless to find food

Day 30

purging sheet music

songs and memories not lost

captive in my heart


and now the poems




Within all of us

Rainbows lie

To find them

Just look closely

Into someone’s eye

The golds of love

The purples of desire

The hatred of burgundy

Mixing the yellow of fire


Rainbows can’t be seen

From just red to green

It is the reflection of all

From spark to shade

And becomes the place

Where tears are made


From love to pain

From freedom to chains

They are the beams of the watchtower

Searching, hour after hour

For the lost ships

Through the foggy sea

Searching for the rainbow

Within me


Zack Hoffman



Wad this Up


Make a list of things to do

and march them to quicksand

Have Michael Jackson tell you

you’re the best Jew in the band

Write letters to your congressman

about your next-door neighbor’s wife

Watch the tube and masturbate

to someone else’s life

The acupuncturist has a needle

to cure your flesh of fear

You’ve been thrown away so many times

it doesn’t seem so queer.


Zack Hoffman

July 1995

Zack Hoffman 2017