Prose Header

The Lost Golem

by Mel Waldman

Act 1
Act 2
appear in
this issue.
Act 3: conclusion

Act 3, scene 1

Rabbi Levy is back in David Goldstein’s studio apartment sitting on the black leather couch. The giant stands in a corner of the room. But David is still missing. He is not sitting at his desk or on the black leather couch next to the rabbi.

[Rabbi Levy] David, where are you? I feel your presence. But I do not see you. Can’t find you! You are like a son to me and more...

Well...I guess it is time to tell you another story. Wherever you are, I hope you are well and are able to hear my words.

(Suddenly, the rabbi stands up and walks downstage.) I had a dream last night, a very dark dream. Only once before did I have such a dark dream. Only once before... The dream was a storm: a dark violent dream that the Nazis were coming to Brooklyn to destroy us again. Their first targets were the Tree of Life Synagogue and the Jewish people living in the Midwood section of Brooklyn.

And in this dark dream, I prayed that the Golem of Prague would come back to life and save the Jews of Midwood and the Tree of Life Synagogue. If the golem achieved this goal, he could possibly save all the Jews of Brooklyn. If only... the Nazis were defeated in Midwood... when they arrived at the entrance to the Tree of Life. If only...

Of course... my knowledge is limited. I have studied Kabbalah all my life and whatever I know is... a gift from Hashem. How could I resurrect the Golem of Prague? And how could I magically transport him to Brooklyn, New York to save us? Such deeds are impossible! Yet I dreamed I could summon the golem.

For years, I read different stories of Rabbi Loew’s Golem of Prague again and again. Often, I identified with Rabbi Loew. I thought, perhaps, I was really Rabbi Loew. But that is impossible!

Yet once... Years ago, I had a similar dream. And I did something bold and dangerous! I created... Yes, I created a golem from mud. Creation is the realm of Hashem but I used my sacred and secret knowledge to create a golem to save the Jewish community of Midwood and all of Brooklyn.

But David, the Nazis never came. Thank G-d they never returned. Yet I was left with a soulless golem. What was I to do? I prayed to Hahsem for guidance. I knew I might have to destroy the golem. And yet...

But let me digress for a moment. You were there, in my dark dream when I prayed for the Golem of Prague to return. I prayed that the golem would defend the Jews of Midwood. Not you, David! And the Golem of Prague appeared in my dark dream. But he came to your home. We were there and we saw it appear out of nowhere.

Now, it is time to talk about my own golem. You see, I never destroyed the golem I created. After I prayed to Hashem for guidance, I had another dream in which I felt the presence of Hashem. And Hashem communicated that my golem would be transformed, possessing all the gifts of a golem and the soul of a human being.

And in this metamorphosis, you were created. When I spoke to you the next day, you possessed the power of speech. And you spoke with wisdom and spirituality, although you questioned the very existence of Hashem.

Yes, David, you are the golem I created and that Hashem transformed into a higher being. To me... you are my son... my spiritual son! I did not want you to defend the Jewish community of Midwood. I was afraid you might be injured or destroyed. You see, David, I do not understand all your gifts and weaknesses. You are the first golem/human hybrid in existence.

And one of your gifts is invisibility! David, if you hear my words, appear now and give this old rabbi some peace of mind!

(Suddenly, David Goldstein appears. He is sitting on the black leather couch.)

[David Goldstein] Here I am, Rabbi Levy. I believe I fell asleep. I had an eerie dream. A fantastic dream of golems. I even dreamed I was a golem!

[Rabbi L.] You are a golem, David! A very special one, with a human soul and other gifts from Hashem.

[David G.] You are mistaken, rabbi. I am a human being. That giant in the corner is a golem. Don’t you see him?

[Rabbi L.] Yes, I see the giant! But I believe he is a figment of our imagination. In my dream, I summoned him. You were there too — for we are connected in many ways.

[David G.] But he is real!

[Rabbi L.] Unreal, David! He was created in my... our dream! He is as real as our dreams. David, the mind is a powerful gift from Hashem. And sometimes it deceives us, makes us believe what we need to believe.

[David G.] But we both see him. Why would we need to believe he exists?

[Rabbi L.] I think we want him to rescue the Jewish community.

[David G.] He can!

[Rabbi L.] He does not exist! Now let us close our eyes and pray silently to Hashem. (Rabbi Levy and David Goldstein close their eyes.) Let us pray for the truth, whatever it is. Hashem will watch over and protect us. (There is a long silence.) Now, let us recite the Shema! Hear O Israel, YHVH is our G-d, YHVH is One. (A brief silence follows.) Now let us open our eyes and discover the truth. (They open their eyes and search for the giant.)

[David G.] The giant is gone!

[Rabbi L.] Yes, he is gone. Our minds no longer deceive us, David.

[David G.] And I am a golem? You created me?

[Rabbi L.] Yes, you are a golem. And I created you. But Hashem transformed you into a beautiful spiritual being.

[David G.] Even though I question His very existence?

[Rabbi L.] Yes.

[David G.] (walks downstage and speaks): Then I must defend our Jewish community if the Nazis return. We deserve to live! We have a right to exist! All of Hashem’s creations have a right to live and rejoice in His presence!


Act 3, scene 2

A sprawling photo of the Tree of Life Synagogue stretches across the backstage. Rabbi Levy and David Goldstein stand downstage. In the distance, the sound of marching troops is heard.

[David G.] Rabbi, you must go inside and join the others.

[Rabbi L.] Hashem will protect you.

[David G.] And I will protect you and the Jewish community. Now, go inside. I had a dark and grotesque but beautiful dream last night.

[Rabbi L.] So did I.

[David G.] Perhaps, we dreamed the same dream.

[Rabbi L.] Yes, perhaps.

[David G.] I dreamed the Nazis came to the Midwood section of Brooklyn. They stopped in front of the steps of the Tree of Life. But I destroyed them and the Jewish community was saved.

[Rabbi L.] I dreamed this dream too.

[David G.] Each act of violence ripped my soul! Each act of violence was dark and grotesque, but a necessary evil to save the lives of innocent Jews! And saving the lives of the Jewish people is a beautiful thing.

[Rabbi L.] Yes, it is.

[David G.] (Moving downstage and closer to the audience): We deserve to live! Even I — a golem transformed into a golem and human being with a soul — deserve to live! We have a right to exist! All of Hashem’s creations have a right to live and rejoice in His presence!


Copyright © 2007 by Mel Waldman

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