Mudcat Café message #12298 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #2800   Message #12298
Posted By: Frank in the swamps
15-Sep-97 - 02:49 AM
Thread Name: Hebrew/ Yiddish/ Ladino songs
Subject: RE: Hebrew/ Yiddish/ Ladino songs
Shula, there was a fella called Moshe Beregovski who had the misfortune to be a Jewish collector of folk song in Russia under Stalin's regime. My Darlin' has his collection called "Old Jewish Folk Music" published by University of Pennsylvania press, 1982. The songs are in Yiddish, which is Greek to me (or English, as spoken by some of the hillbillies I know), but the book includes translations at the end of each section. It's got a lot of songs, with music. A humorous one, sung between a girl and her suitor posing absurd challenges and ending with that delightful Jewish sense of humour goes like....

Get me a bear from the woods
And teach him to write
Only then and only then
Will I be yours.

I'll get you a bear from the woods
And teach him to write
If you'll make me seven children
And stay a maiden.

I'll make you seven children
And stay a maiden
If you'll make me a cradle
Without wood and without tools.

Etc. until...

I'll fry you up seven fish
And have them stay alive
If you'll make me a ladder
That will reach the sky.

I'll make you a ladder
That will reach the sky
I'm a fool, and you're a bigger one
Let's both keep quiet.

It's edited & translated by Mark Slobin.

Good Hunting,

Frank.

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