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The Poetics Of Yannai’s Sixth: Between Scripture, God, And Congregation

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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines the intersection of the three vectors in Yannai's, the &t;sixth&t; of the title. It takes up another, more sustained example of direct address to God. The influence of the prayer vector explains this divergence from the verse, where God is wholly in the third person, but what is more important in the present context is that Yannai employs the perfect verb systematically, almost as though he were patterning each stanza after a verse where God acts in the 2nd pers. masc. sing. The first strategy is to bracket out the header, and to give up on otherwise patterning the stanzas after the opening of the seder, and instead to advance the narrative. More importantly, the verse's form and substance generally determine the shape of only part of the stanza, usually only the first hemistich. The relationship among the parties in the performative moment becomes more immediate.

Keywords: Congregation; God; hemistich; prayer vector; Scripture; seder; stanza; Yannai



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