Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Gefilte Fish

Gefilte Fish 
adapted by Daniel Slosberg from Adrienne Cooper’s translation (on “Enchanted” CD liner notes) 
of Isidor Lillian’s original Yiddish, all via Batya Fonda’s Jewish Songs web site. 
Tell me what food fills all Jews with pleasure 
With friends and fam’ly or at home alone 
It’s neither meat nor milk—a pareve treasure— 
For Jewish folk, the best food ever known. 
Tell me what’s a Jewish wife’s ambition 
You crave it, yes, we know you truly do 
A Jewish treat that has its own tradition 
And each erev Shabbat you want to chew. 
Gefilte fish, gefilte fish... 
A thousand-flavored treat that’s like no other 
First made for me by my beloved mother. 
It’s a precious delectation, 
Nectar of the Hebrew nation, 
Sacred source of edible elation. 
Gefilte fish themselves are proudly Yiddish 
You come from shul, you stand and say the kiddush 
At home it’s clean, serene, and fresh 
You sit down near a covered dish 
And then you’re served gefilte fish. 
Gefilte fish, gefilte fish... 
Hungarians love their goulash with paprika 
The Polish love their hunter’s stew with bread 
Romanians all must have their mamaliga 
While Russians love their borsht hot steaming red 
The Germans cherish dumplings served with cabbage 
Kebobs of muMon light up Georgian eyes. 
But all these taste exceptionally average 
Compared to what we Jews know takes first prize.... 
[alt: Only Jewish people know what takes first prize...]
Gefilte fish, gefilte fish…

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