gershon hepner

Rookie - 10 Points (5 3 38 / leipzig)

On Hanukkah On Shabbos - Poem by gershon hepner

Come, friends, and eat the fatted goose and bread that’s made
from finest flour, doves and turtledoves;
on Sabbath Hanukkah no man should be afraid
to share them with the woman whom he loves.

Ducks that have been stuffed and roasted on the spit
like fire-offerings in the tabernacle
should be your entrée while with wisdom and with wit
the parshah and the haftarah you tackle.

On meat that’s tender, tasty, and unshmurah matsoh,
say blessings, and respond to them “Amen, ”
while celebrating with your most beloved Schatz a
Shabbos meal––it’s Hanukkah again!

Let no one ask for water, even Perrier
must on the table be replaced with wine; ,
not once, but twice at least––three times I dare to say––
a little tipsiness is more than fine.

Come let your ears start ringing not with sounds of water
but with blood of grapes that you have poured;
although there’s probably no Shabbos that is shorter,
there’s none when you’re less likely to be bored.

Inspired by a Shabbat zemirah which is sung once or twice a year only, on Shabbat Hanukkah. I was inspired to write this translation after Marty Lockshin, on erev Shabbat before the last day of Hanukkah, had printed out the Hebrew text of this zemirah in preparation for the morrow.


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Poem Submitted: Friday, December 18, 2009

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