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DER YIDDISH-VINKL November 14, 2003

The Yiddish Forward devoted a page in its October 10 edition to Sukkot and Simchat Torah. These holidays are, like Thanksgiving, related to the harvest time. Indeed, some believe that the colonial Thanksgiving was based on the Puritans’ reading of the Old Testament. Sukkot runs for several days and closes with the reading of the last Torah passage and then begins the series once more. The following are fragments of a poem by Avrom Reyzin. The transliteration is by Goldie A. Gold, and the English version is by Gus Tyler.

Hakofes

Zol di freyd zikh vayzn vider

In dem yontef — freydik, frum.

Klingen zol gezang fun brider

Bay der bime un arum.

Un di kinderlekh vos merer —

Kh’ze zey do — zey kumen on!

Mit di rabonim, mit di lerer,

Yedes kind mit nayer fon

Un di fon arum dem shtekl

Un a likhtl in der hoykh.

Un dos likhtl in an epl

Dos aleyn derfreyt shoyn oykh.

Un dernokh mit ziger-mine

Greyt tsum “marsh” shoyn kleyn un groys

Ringlen dray mol um di bime

Der bal-tfile geyt foroys.

Seyfer-toyre — glaykh geshetste

Di hakofes der glaykh;

Tsi di ershte, tsi di letste —

Oys dem yikhes, orem, raykh

S’iz di raykhkeyt in dem minyen

Nokh a yid iz shoyn a glik!

Yeder minyen iz an inyen

Un mit gloybn shaynt dos glik!

Sukkot

Let our joy resound once more

On this pious happy day

With those we’ll love forever more

With those we always want to stay.

See the children, more and more

I see them here as they do run.

With rabbis, teachers, they adore

Waving banners ’neath the sun.

For every flag there is a stick

And there’s a light held way up high

A luscious apple you can lick

You want to laugh, you want to cry.

And in a mien victorious

Prepare to march both young and old

Their manner is most glorious

They circle round in triple-fold.

The Torah scrolls they do revere

And each does hold an equal rich

Way up front or in the rear —

No matter poor or very rich.

Their wealth is present in the minyan

And every extra Jew adds riches

We all do hold this same opinion

Our faith does bind us with its stitches!

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