Songs of Soothing: Episode 11 “Ki Hinei KaHomer”

In the Jewish calendar, we are just about ready (or not) to enter into Yom Kippur — a full day of fasting and prayer, expiation and forgiveness. The liturgy for this day is full of many different images of our relationship with the Divine: sometimes imagining a God who is loving and compassionate and sometimes [...]

Songs of Soothing: Episode 10 “Turning Song”

In honor of the New Moon of the Hebrew month of Elul — the month in which we bring our hearts to returning to our truest selves — I wanted to share this “Turning Song” with you. It takes (as in “steals”) most of its lyrics right from the Book of Psalms. One note: So [...]

Songs of Soothing: Episode 9 “Nachamu”

We are beginning, in the Jewish calendar, a period of Seven Weeks of Consolation in which we move from commemorating the destruction of the Temple to readying ourselves for the New Year. Each week, in synagogue, we read (sing, really) a selection from the book of Isaiah that offers nechemta or comfort to the people. The [...]

Songs of Soothing: Episode 8 “Far Shore”

Lots of my own songs of soothing start off as private little songs that I write only for myself, everyday amulets to carry with me, written just for what I need today. And most of those songs never make it to public ears. But here is one called “Far Shore.”

Songs of Soothing: Episode 7 “Deep Blue Sea”

Like many traditional songs of soothing, “Deep Blue Sea” is about death. Don’t believe me that this is a pattern? Sing “Rock-a-bye Baby” all the way through. See? Personally I think this has something to with the fact that the real “audience” for a words of a lullaby is the person singing it. And in [...]

Songs of Soothing: Episode 6 “My Dear Heart”

I wrote “My Dear Heart” while I was in the dreaming stages of this whole Songs of Soothing project. It is inspired in part by “I was asleep but my heart was awake” which is sung in the Song of Songs. May your own heart dream loudly!

Songs of Soothing: Episode 5 “Captain’s Lullaby”

Dragged up from the depths of my life as a sailor of big boats, “Captain’s Lullaby” is for all those who have stood watch while the captain (or the baby) sleeps below.

Songs of Soothing: Episode 4 “Nothing Wrong at all”

A sonic amulet is meant only for the person who commissions it. The sacred and the private have a lot in common and I don’t make a practice of including sonic amulets in the repertoire of songs I share publicly. At the same time, it makes sense that folks want to hear some “samples of [...]

Songs of Soothing: Episode 3 “Here I am”

“Here I am” is a piece I originally wrote for a “Songs of Soothing” workshop I lead at a local yoga studio. It combines (in Hebrew) a verse from Psalm 34 and a verse from Psalm 145 with my very free English translation.

Songs of Soothing: Episode 2 “Softly and Tenderly”

This episode’s song is “Softly and Tenderly” — my interpretation of what was originally written as a (very) Christian hymn. What do you think of my mama-centric version?