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.
 
To Theodore Herzl
By Gustav Gottheil (Trans. George Alexander Kohut)
 
WHO called thee to such holy high estate?
Who taught thy lips the all-redeeming Word,
Which touched us to emotions as we heard
And soars aloft to Him, that guides our fate?
Who kindled Ardor’s undiminished flame;        5
To make thee bold and eager to attain,
Despite all that gives thee deepest pain,
The highest good, not evanescent fame;
Who doth sustain the skyward lifted hand,
The hopeful sign and symbol of our zeal,        10
Upraised high our shattered nerves to steel
As if in warning that we dauntless stand?—
It is the God within the nation’s soul
That spurs him on to dare to do the right.
He guides his steps and steadieth his sight        15
That he may strive unswerving towards the goal;
Like all true servants of the living God,
Thou gavest heed to that Celestial Voice
And didst assume our burdens, of Thy Choice.
Thy heart inspired, thy spirit overawed,        20
Remain our true exemplar in the strife,
Though good reward or evil be thy share
We follow thee, for Zion everywhere
To struggle for the newly dawning life.
 
 
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