Monday, September 10, 2007

Zayde

My Zayde (not to be confused with My Zayde).

My Zayde lived alone in Brooklyn,
We rarely met, he never put me on his knee,
I tried to ask my relatives about him,
And they spoke, but with a bitter memory.

They told me about the times he used to hit them,
About his inventions that never seemed to sell,
And they spoke about the day he thought he heard God speaking,
And the messages he warned him not to tell.

Yes, Zayde made us laugh,
But Zayde made us cry,
And Zayde never backed down from a fight,
And despite it all I still loved my Zayde,
Because Zayde still taught me wrong from right.

One day Zayde decided things had to change,
It all seemed so logical to him,
The modern ways of America,
Were causing his family to sin.

So he made the announcement,
He said he had no choice,
He said God had told him this was right,
So he packed his things and then he was gone,
Off to live with the righteous in Crown Heights.

I don't know how he could have let it happen,
He didn't speak to us for about twenty years,
He cared more about us being Jewish than a family,
And somehow never seemed to shed a tear.

Yes, Zayde made us laugh,
But Zayde made us cry,
And Zayde never backed down from a fight,
And despite it all I still loved my Zayde,
Because Zayde still taught me wrong from right.

Because of Zayde my Papa never went back into a synagogue,
Because of Zayde my brother thinks it's all a crock,
Because of Zayde, I will always feel haunted,
Between what he wanted, and what I know I'm not.

Who knows what my Zayde would think of me,
If he could see me standing here today?
He'd probably ask me why I don't have peyos,
And tell me to send my shiska girl away.

But my children will be different,
My children will laugh and sing,
My children will know the beauty of Yiddishkeit,
And my children will know that I love them always,
Even if they do things that I don't think are right.

Zayde has been gone for many years now,
But his spirit still lives on, it's true,
And I know that when I'm a Zayde, things will be different,
Because he taught me all the things not to do.

2 comments:

sam said...

You should send this to the National Yiddish Song Centre. They'd publish it in an instant.

Friar Yid (not Shlita) said...

What's a centre?