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 Eight Chanukah Lights
By Isidore Myers
 
WITH fervor and joy we give thanks to the Lord,
And glory and praise to His name we accord,
While we greet with great gladness this glorious night
And piously kindle each Chanukah light.
 
To God who is one, and whose name is but one,        5
We’ll ever feel grateful for what He has done;
When all our race was as dark as the night
Said the Guardian of Israel, “Let there be light!”
 
The Commandments God gave to our nation alone,
Whose words were engraved on two tablets of stone;        10
And our people were chosen, with zeal and with might,
To spread through the world the great heavenly light.
 
Our fathers most nobly have striven to be
As true to their God as the patriarchs three,
Whose faith was a star which was shining so bright        15
That the gloom of the world was illumed by its light.
 
Four parts of the world—north, south, west and east—
See the Israelites keeping the Chanukah feast,
Who, just like ourselves, are performing the rite
Of piously kindling each Chanukah light.        20
 
The five Hasmoneans whose memory dear
The sons of our people will ever revere,
With the courage of heroes did fight for the right,
And God’s Temple they cleansed and rekindled the light.
 
Six days we must labor and do all our work,        25
And woe unto him who his duty doth shirk!
Though the battle of life is a hard one to fight,
With heaven’s assistance our task is made light.
 
When the seventh day comes, by God hallowed and blest,
We should joyfully welcome the day of sweet rest,        30
For our lives are made happy and rendered more bright
By the joys of the Sabbath, its peace and its light.
 
May the eight days of Chanukah strengthen our mind
To continue to labor for God and mankind,
Till the day shall arrive when all men will unite        35
To serve the one God and to walk in His light.
 
 
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