Shuli Nathan – Yerushalayim Shel Zahav | שולי נתן – ירושלים של זהב

שולי נתן – ירושלים של זהב. Shuli Nathan – Yerushalayim Shel Zahav. Originally composed by Naomi Shemer (commissioned by Jerusalem Mayor Teddy Kolek), Yerushalayim Shel Zahav became an instant hit and Shuli Nathan became famous.

According to Wikipedia:

Naomi Shemer wrote the original song for the Israeli Music Festival (it was not in competition but had been commissioned by the Mayor, Teddy Kollek), held on 15 May 1967, the night after Israel’s nineteenth Independence Day. She chose the then-unknown Shuli Nathan to sing the song.

Some of the song’s melody is based on a Basque lullaby, Pello Joxepe (Foolish Joseph), composed by Juan Francisco Petriarena ‘Xenpelar’ (1835-1869), which Shemer had heard in a performance by singer/songwriter Paco Ibañez, who visited Israel in 1962 and sang this song to a group that included Naomi Shemer and Nehama Hendel. Shemer acknowledged hearing Hendel perform Pello Joxepe in the mid-1960s. Shemer said she had unconsciously based some of her melody on the lullaby, and had felt very bad when she found realised she had. Ibañez was asked how he felt when he heard Shemer had based some of the melody on Pello Joxepe. He replied by saying that he was “glad it helped in some way” and that he was not angry and did not perceive it as plagiarism.[1]

At that time, the Old City was still occupied by Jordan and under Jordanian rule; Jews had been exiled from the Old City and all of Jerusalem east of the Old City, losing their homes and possessions, and becoming refugees. All Jews were barred from either returning or entering the areas under Jordanian occupation, and many holy sites were desecrated and damaged during the 19-year occupation by Jordan. Only three weeks after the song was published, the Six-Day War broke out. The song was the battle cry and morale booster of the Israeli troops. Shemer even sang it for them before the war and festival, making them among the first in the world to hear it. On 7 June, the Israel Defense Forces liberated the eastern part of Jerusalem and the Old City from the Jordanians. When Shemer heard the paratroopers singing “Jerusalem of Gold” at the Western Wall, she wrote the final verse, reversing the phrases of lamentation found in the second verse. The line about shofars sounding from the Temple Mount is a reference to an event that actually took place on 7 June.

 

Here are the Lyrics and Translation

(thanks to jerusalemofgold.co.il and http://lyricstranslate.com)

English Hebrew Transliteration Hebrew
The mountain air is clear as wine
And the scent of pines
Is carried on the breeze of twilight
With the sound of bells.And in the slumber of tree and stone
Captured in her dream
The city that sits solitary
And in its midst is a wall.Jerusalem of gold, and of bronze, and of light
Behold I am a violin for all your songs.How the cisterns have dried
The market-place is empty
And no one frequents the Temple Mount
In the Old City.And in the caves in the mountain
Winds are howling
And no one descends to the Dead Sea
By way of Jericho.

Jerusalem of gold, and of bronze, and of light
Behold I am a violin for all your songs.

But as I come to sing to you today,
And to adorn crowns to you (i.e. to tell your praise)
I am the smallest of the youngest of your children (i.e. the least worthy of doing so)
And of the last poet (i.e. of all the poets born).

For your name scorches the lips
Like the kiss of a seraph
If I forget thee, Jerusalem,
Which is all gold…

Jerusalem of gold, and of bronze, and of light
Behold I am a violin for all your songs.

We have returned to the cisterns
To the market and to the market-place
A ram’s horn (shofar) calls out (i.e. is being heard) on the Temple Mount
In the Old City.

And in the caves in the mountain
Thousands of suns shine –
We will once again descend to the Dead Sea
By way of Jericho!

Jerusalem of gold, and of bronze and of light
Behold I am a violin for all your songs.

Avir harim zalul kayayin
Ve-rei’ah oranim
Nissa be-ru’ah ha’arbayim
Im kol pa’amonimU-ve-tardemat ilan va-even
Shvuyah ba-halomah
Ha-ir asher badad yoshevet
U-ve-libbah homahYerushalayim shel zahav
Ve-shel nehoshet ve-shel or
Ha-lo le-khol shirayikh
Ani kinnor.Eikhah yavshu borot ha-mayim
Kikkar ha-shuk reikah
Ve-ein poked et Har ha-Bayit
Ba-ir ha-attikahU-va-me’arot asher ba-selah
Meyallelot ruhot
Ve-ein yored el Yam ha-Melah
Be-derekh Yeriho

Yerushalayim shel zahav
Ve-shel nehoshet ve-shel or
Ha-lo le-khol shirayikh
Ani kinnor.

Akh be-vo’i ha-yom la-shir lakh
Ve-lakh likshor ketarim
Katonti mi-ze’ir bana’ikh
U-me-aharon ha-meshorerim

Ki shemekh zorev et ha-sefatayim
Ke-neshikat saraf
Im eshkakhekh Yerushalayim
Asher kullah zahav

Yerushalayim shel zahav
Ve-shel nehoshet ve-shel or
Ha-lo le-khol shirayikh
Ani kinnor.

Hazarnu el borot ha-mayim
La-shuk ve-la-kikkar
Shofar kore be-Har ha-Bayit
Ba-ir ha-attikah

U-va-me’arot asher ba-selah
Alfey shemashot zorhot
Nashuv nered el Yam ha-Melah
Be-derekh Yeriho

Yerushalayim shel zahav
Ve-shel nehoshet ve-shel or
Ha-lo le-khol shirayikh
Ani kinnor.

אויר הרים צלול כיין
וריח אורנים
נישא ברוח הערביים
עם קול פעמונים.ובתרדמת אילן ואבן
שבויה בחלומה
העיר אשר בדד יושבת
ובליבה חומהירושלים של זהב
ושל נחושת ושל אור
הלא לכל שירייך
אני כינור…חזרנו אל בורות המים
לשוק ולכיכר
שופר קורא בהר הבית
בעיר העתיקה.

ובמערות אשר בסלע
אלפי שמשות זורחות
נשוב נרד אל ים המלח
בדרך יריחו.

אך בבואי היום לשיר לך
ולך לקשור כתרים
קטונתי מצעיר בנייך
ומאחרון המשוררים.

כי שמך צורב את השפתיים
כנשיקת שרף
אם אשכחך ירושלים
אשר כולה זהב

ירושלים של זהב…

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