Sep 272012

Surely we can all identify with the difficulties of securing a decent patron. A cute poem that proves that, yes, Sephardim too are funny Jews.

בוודאי, כולנו יכולים להזדהות עם הקושי לרכוש תומך הגון. הנה שיר חמוד שמוכיח שכן, גם ספרדים הם יהודים מצחיקים.

Avraham ibn Ezra (1089 – 1167)
I Came Early to the Lord’s House

To the lord’s house I came early – “He’s out riding,” they said
I came back after evening — “He’s already abed.”
He’s either climbing into his carriage or climbing into his bed –
Woe to the poor man, born with no star overhead!

אברהם אבן עזרא / إبراهيم ابن عزرا
אשכים לבית השר

אַשְׁכִּים לְבֵית הַשָּׂר – אֹמְרִים: כְּבָר רָכָב!
אָבֹא לְעֵת עֶרֶב – אֹמְרִים: כְּבָר שָׁכָב!
אוֹ יַעֲלֶה מֶרְכָּב, אוֹ יַעֲלֶה מִשְׁכָּב –
אוֹיָה לְאִישׁ עָנִי, נוֹלַד בְּלִי כוֹכָב!


‘Ashkím le-véit ha-sár – ‘omrím: kvar rakháv!
‘Avó le-ʕéit ʕérev – ‘omrím: kvar shakháv!
‘O yaʕaléh merkáv, ‘o yaʕaléh mishkáv –
‘Oyáh le-‘ísh ʕaní, nolád bli khokháv!

  3 Responses to “Avraham ibn Ezra, “Ashkim le-Veit ha-Sar””

  1. Shouldn’t Nolad B’Li Kokhav – be “born without a star” – meaning, “born without a lucky star”

  2. Everyone’s a critic! You try making “star” rhyme with “said” or “abed”! You can read it in the original anyway!

  3. See what you made me do, Yochanan. I changed it. I just can’t disappoint you.

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