Rolf Gompertz

The Storyteller

60 people listen to my 45-minute speech at the Simon Wiesenthal Center, then stay for the Q&A session.

An older man sits at the far end of a row to my right.
As we finish, he leaves.

Moments later he reappears.
He is around my age.

He comes closer.
I see now that he is all choked up,

With tears in his eyes.
I wait for him to say something,

He cannot speak.
What do I do, what can I say?

I move towards him,
I give him a hug,

He hugs back,
We hold each other.

“Thank you,” he mumbles.
Looking at him, I ask,

“Yes.”  He nods and leaves.

What has touched him so deeply?
I will always wonder,

I will never know.
But something I said mattered.

We are all messengers to one another,
We touch souls.  We matter.

We make a difference.

© Rolf Gompertz

Rolf is the author of several books, including A Jewish Novel About Jesus, Sparks of Spirit: How To Find Love and Meaning in Your Life 24 Hours a Day, The Messiah of Midtown Park and To Life! To Love! In Poetry and Prose, a Spiritual Memoir.  He is a regular speaker at the Simon Wiesenthal Center/Museum of Tolerance.