And God spoke to Noah and his children with him, saying:
I establish my covenant with you and your offspring to come, and with every living thing that is with you – birds, cattle and every living thing on the earth with you, everything that comes out of the ark, every living thing on the earth.
This is the poem read by David Russell, the Jewish representative at the Interfaith Celebration of Animal on September 6 in London:
THE SOUND OF BIRDS AT NOON
Is surely not vicious.
They sing without giving us a thought
And they are as numerous
As the seed of Abraham.
They have a life of their own,
Flight for them is no act of the mind.
Some are prized, others despised,
But the wing itself is beauty.
Their hearts aren’t heavy
Even when they peck at a worm.
Perhaps they’re light-minded.
The heavens were given to them
For dominion over day and night
And the moment they alight on a branch,
The branch too is theirs.
This chirping is entirely free of malice.
Over the years it may even
To carry a note of compassion.
~ Chana Bloch and Chana Kronfeld.
Translated from the Hebrew by Dahlia Ravikovitch.