Current Mood

Image by João Oliveira from Pixabay

August consists of a long, long list of plans I do not look forward to.  Busy season at work.  Preparation of lecture and quizzes for the teaching job I do not really like, but feel guilty about leaving, because the Department Head let me audit another course for free to prep for a certification exam1.  Social obligations which were not my idea and which I am not happy about, but must pretend to be. The High Holidays are coming up. I must plan, not just as an individual, but as a member of the congregation board organizing High Holiday services for the congregation. Under the layers of obligations, my mind sweats as much as my body as I sink resignedly into the Louisiana swamp that is August.

I feel the urgency of an ending summer.  Emails from retailers to shop “fun in the sun” before “back to school” season.  Coworkers can’t book vacations fast enough, slipping in PTO requests before the end of August, before the Delta variant results in travel bans.  If you’re too slow, you’ll miss out and have to provide coverage.  My congregation has the tradition to appoint someone to send out daily spiritual inspirational emails in the month leading up to Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year); it has the effect of filling my inbox with emails that leave me feeling that I must add spiritual self-improvement to the growing list of tasks. I will be leyning (chanting the Torah reading) and giving a short sermon to the congregation, but the emails have me feeling like this is not “enough”.  The shaming, from retailers, coworkers, and congregants alike, is all manufactured, but it is effective.

I come across a week-long women’s-only retreat with one spot left to a country still accepting visitors.  It is reckless.  Irresponsible.  Expensive.  Selfish.  I will pay for it in all-nighters to make up my workload, and in longoverdue marriage counseling sessions, which we are [finally] about to begin.  Still, I cannot help but see it as a rope or a ladder out of the muck.

August fucking sucks.

I am done with this bullshit.

Booking my ticket.


I feel like this rant barely qualifies as a haibun, so maybe I should say “dVerse inspired” rather than “For dVerse


1which I failed, btw.  In my defense, instead of studying, I was interviewing for jobs and it was Passover – another crappy season.


  1. Your life is way too complicated. All the volunteer jobs that congregations, clubs, societies, and schools have for people like you to do will suck the life out of you, as you have expressed so well. I’ve been there, done that as they say. You need to get the hell out of Dodge! I hope your boss approves your PTO.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m going! I feel happier just knowing that I’m going on vacation soon. Like all the social obligations I was not looking forward to at all feel more manageable. I’m going to be kicking myself later when I have to catch up on full-time work job and part-time teaching job, but for now, I am happy.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Ugh! I don’t know what I wish for you ~ a vacay, or a lessening of your workload. But it sounds like you really want the vacay, so I’m rooting for that. I’ve never been to Louisiana either, but I kinda want a praline…

    Good haibun! I wasn’t expecting your rant to turn into poetry 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Wow you are definitely burning the candle at both ends and both ends are soon going to burn out!! Take care of yourself and learn to say NO! If you don’t your body and mind will do it for you!!
    Great haibun rant! :>)

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Go!!! Have a holiday!!! You need and deserve one, sister!!! Guilt is cheap these days. You can pick up a sack of it on any street corner. Just ignore the signs, the emails, the digs (real or imagined) and show yourself some compassion. I am barracking for you with pom poms and ra Ra hats (made those up) and a big old hooter. I am in the stands with a big ol JYP sign in tinsel and markers. You will see me there if you close your eyes.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I hope you manage to relax! Also, leyning and sermoning is a big thing! I’ve long since forgotten how to do the former, and the latter was terrifying even when I was doing it more regularly.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Some of this is self-inflicted obligation. Husband was initially offered the drash honor, but I got jealous because I hadn’t been offered an honor yet and I had half an idea for a drash whereas Husband did not (and didn’t care about being honored) so I kind of stole it. Which was dumb and impulsive. I still have an awesome beginning for a drash, and no middle or end yet!

      Re: leyning, I was trying to get away with volunteering only for aliyot I have leyned in the past so I wouldn’t have to learn anything new (I do not fully know HH trope). But it looks like I’m going to have to learn something new because I am bad at saying no. At least HH aliyot are short.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. After reading of your endless duties and sermonizing, your haiku left me with a bit of a gasp! Underscores the fact that those who sermonize are quite as human as the rest of us! Relax. Take heart.

    Liked by 2 people

      • ‘..pretending to be likeable…’! 🤣 I’m quite sure you are perfectly lovely as you are and the group will delight in your company. Anyway, what’s important for all of us to remember is to like ourselves first and foremost, especially when we don’t feel like it ❤️

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Under the layers of obligations, my mind sweats as much as my body as I sink resignedly into the Louisiana swamp that is August.–This may be one of the best descriptions of August I have ever read. Hope the month has turned out a bit better than you anticipated.

    Liked by 1 person

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