Simchat Torah

In Shul an uneven table
Shall be my bed this night,
On the porch the deputy watches ? clothes colored sable
And my watch is from midnight.

I made my bed: a disheveled sack.
On Baba kama my head is resting.
The mauser against the bed back,
An iron angel from robbery gaurding.

Through the bars of my eyelashes,
Like Ya'acov a prisoner of dream,
I'll see angels of heaven in flashes:
The Hassidim.  Parchment colored cream-

A rusty beard.  A bowed back.  Lame,
Their lofty heads crowned with fur.
And their hearts are glad ? to rejoice they came
In honor of Yom Tov by their law.

Always different are our ways:
You to the Kotel stream
On Chag; but our heart lays
In the Jordan valley of our dream.

There a desolate cosmos taskmaster,
The Shabbat we will greet in that land
And we will pray in Shul to the one master
In the heart of mountains.  Pistol in hand.

Now to Shul go
Son of Ya'acov like Esav's boy.
Simchat Torah gathers you, us also
Gathers battle joy.

In rings we all will be,
Elderly shall rejoice, mourners shall dance,
Dance all of you, so will we,
With our strength we will make the world dance.

And feet like a drum beat,
And mouths like flutes sing,
To the G-d that Jerusalem is his seat
In song and dance our prayers ring.

And our dance will be like a storm,
The house like a boat in a gail,
The gate like a mast will form,
Parochet riotous like a sail.

But slowly the weariness gains,
The song fades, the voices drop,
Slowly ? and broken are the chains,
Slowly slowly the dances stop.

The backs bend, the hands have weakened,
The faces pale, the walls fade from sight.
The candles dim, the eyes are extinguished,
Shabbat in heart.  A joy of light.

Before the ark sinks slow but sure
One last light of flame,
A blossom of holiness now impure,
G-d's presence here is not the same.

Let's sleep, my brother.  Ours is the night.
The day ? to the angel of destruction and hate.
All of us will go to greet the fight,
To welcome the presence of fate.


Written by 'Yair', 23 Tishrai 5694 (1934).
Translated by Shifra Shomron, 19 Sivan 5765 (June 2005).
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