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.
 
Zion
By Louis Federleicht
 
ON lovely dwellings fall the fervid rays,
  The naked rocks lift high their heads in air,
  Dust-covered stones fling back the noon-day’s glare
And strange old ruins tell of ancient days.
A motley throng creeps through the narrow ways,        5
  Pilgrims from far off lands whose faces bear
  The look that tells of by-gone toil and care,
Of weary journeys and of long delays.
What magic is there in this torrid clime?
  What fascination in these hoary walls?        10
  What charm dwells here that sovereignly calls
To hearts of men throughout the reach of time,
  Heedless of earthly gain, yet draws the soul
  Through want and hardship, to what mighty goal?
 
This was the ancient home of Israel;        15
  Here lived our fathers fearless and free;
  Here lives a glory and a memory;
And we His chosen ones, once more shall dwell,
Majestic, jubilant, invincible,
  In this, our heritage; our eyes shall see        20
  The long-ago that is again to be;
The peace that has no ending shall dispel
The dreaming and the doubt, the hopes, the fears.
  With love and longing we await that day
Whose dawn beholds the yearning of the years        25
  Fulfilled at last, and, while we waiting, pray,
A newer life in Mount Moriah wakes,
All over Olivet the morning breaks.
 
 
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