Literature and Poetry/
Pesach

Nathan Alterman

The Night of Elijah

He shall arrive to dine as he has done through the past

In Israeli Homes in Azor and Aderet

He shall arrive at the table of the Hebrew unit

Dressed in smoke, dust and lead

 

He shall stretch out his hand to his cup as by custom

The company shall stand to greet him in silence, while at the entrance -

as a giant tear festive and golden,

the moon shall glow in the Passover heaven

 

It shall bless the table and the virtuous meal

It shall bless the entire company be it station or mobile

It shall bless the power that emerged as a nation

That was born once again at its holiday of creation

 

On the heavens high above of a battling night

The moon shall flare and the earth – an eye of wine

And the patriarch who has grown old with the age of the people

Shall be found standing on this night at its cradle

 

Then the patriarch whispers: Between commander of company or that of platoon

I may not discern. Bear with me the ancient ancestor

Yet the Rock of Israel, the Father – commander of all sons

Shall bless your holiday over bread of the poor.

 

He shall bless the table upon which the warm meal is served...

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