Verse > Anthologies > Joseph Friedlander, comp. > The Standard Book of Jewish Verse
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Joseph Friedlander, comp.  The Standard Book of Jewish Verse.  1917.
 
The Holy Flame “Menorah”
By George Jay Holland
 
THOU sacred flame, so mellow and subdued,
Burning with tremulous, flickering beam
  In the holy place, before the all Supreme,
As though the very fire were all imbued
 
With that almighty prophet’s humble soul,        5
  With Moses’ sense of deep humility,
Whose height of feeling knew no humble goal,
  Whose aims bore naught of man’s futility.
 
Thou, holy fire, whose light shall ever guide
The steps of wandering Israel, to the shrine        10
Of Him who was, who is, and ne’er will cease to be;
Whose luminous fire gleams down the tide
Of centuries, both of greatness and of woe,
When Israel’s greatness bore a trace divine,
When Israel’s fortune sank, far, far below        15
Even the lot of those poor Nubian slaves,
Who served our fathers in the promised land;
To thee, oh ancient light! whose very name
Is a memorial of God’s earliest word,
We look to thee, and hail the conquering hand        20
Of wisdom’s day, o’er spiritual night,
And breathe with God: “Let there be Light.”
 
 
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