This week we meet Noah. The literal translation of Noah''s name, Noach, also means comfort. Thus, “Noah''s Ark” can actually be read as “Comfort''s Ark”. The ark of comfort stands as an archetype of all the varied walls of protection we construct around ourselves. It represents the havens of insulation to which we cling. It is fitting that we read this parsha just as we have left the sukkah – the epitome of a temporal structure. The sukkah is an embodied reminder that all the facades of comfort that we build in this world are but fleeting in comparison to the ultimate haven we must take in our connection to the Divine. This week''s poem juxtaposes the comfortable numbness of an insulated existence with the dis-ease of the external world and her endless woes. The poem''s narrative traces the path of one who rejects comfort & complacency and opts rather to plunge into the waiting deluge of the world’s pain. Our arks of comfort serve the crucial purpose of protecting and nurturing us. But perhaps their even greater purpose is to provoke us to transcend their very casing; to be the cage which awaits our necessary escape. What is your arc of comfort and what are its limitations? What is the comfort zone you are being called to break-free from? And what is one step you can take towards that transcendence?Ark Angel The synagogue of my youthher sanctuarywas my arkit arched above my bowing headits wood was rich and dark my eyes would rise up ceilings curve which like a wave''s soft back bulged with the waters of our prayers which crashed on heavens black we sat in twos or family fourslike creatures far from homewhile thirty feet into the airark''s belly was our dome our needs were met as sure as breathis given by G-d''s wind our prayers were by attentive earheard ere we need begin like flight of birds our voices rose within this vessel cagewhile just outside the sound was heardof a world in stormy rage and at the apex of the roofof our inverted shipa window round of painted glasslet fall a single drip the dagger drip cut through the voidof our sustaining wombsliced through the prayer that filled the airanointing me with doom for this small taste which wet my facewith water of the world outsidecould penetrate and transform spacelike the tear of an angel''s cry and all that was once safe and suretransformed before my eyesinto an overbearing stormof sharp and fiery lies beneath the bonds of beams of woodmy restless nature grewtill i cursed the arc which suckled mewith claustrophobic rue beyond the casing of the cradlebeyond the arc''s curved armsthe sea called to my safe-sick soulwith all her worldly charms and i cried back to G-d and fatelike jonah in the fisha prayer so frantic for escapethat G-d fulfilled my wish and spit me out with open mouthfrom within the whale cocoondelivered me to dark dread sealike one thrown from the womb and suddenly my mouth was filledwith salt alien to my tastewhile sights and sounds of curse surroundmy fateful fall from grace i tremble tread among the deadbeneath sky sore with rainand faced with earth''s realitythe flood became my pain so terror seized i tore through seain search of semblance of ship and found its curve beneath my feet submerged to arc''s round tip suspended calm and floating therewith just its top revealedwas island apexed synagogue which waters dare not conceal with weary want i climbed the curvewhich once had arched my headand from my mouth rained forth a song -a prayer for all the dead i peered into this hanging spherethrough the window of painted glassand yearned for all that i had lostin the sanctuary of my past to be a bird caught in that cageor to be an angel on highi gazed as if into myselfand silently i cried and at the apex of the roofof their inverted shipa window round of painted glasslet fall a single drip.