Jerusalem of Iron
Lyrics and music: Meir Ariel
At the end of the Six Day War, Naomi Shemer performed before a gathering of the Paratroopers Division in Jerusalem, and sang “Jerusalem of Gold” with the two new stanzas that had been added to honor the unification of the city. When she finished her song, one of the paratroopers jumped on to the stage, and sang the following song in response. This is Meir Ariel’s first song that received public recognition.
In your darkness, Jerusalem,
we found a loving heart,
when we came to widen your borders
and to overwhelm the enemy.
We became satiated of all his mortars,
then suddenly dawn broke,
it just arose, not yet even white,
and it was already red.
Jerusalem of iron,
of lead, of darkness,
haven't we set your wall free?
The strafed battalion broke forwards,
all of it in blood and smoke,
and a mother came, and another mother,
in the congregation of the bereaved
Biting its lips, not without toil,
the battalion continued fighting,
till, at the end, the flag flapped
above the house of bitterness.
Jerusalem of iron….
The king's army dispersed,
the sniper his tower is silent,
now it s possible to go to the Dead Sea
by the way of Jericho.
Now it s possible to the Temple Mount
And to the Western Wall,
here, you are, in the twilight
almost all of you, gold.
Jerusalem of gold,
and lead, and dreams
Will there forever be peace, between your walls.