Instead of boring you with the usual response, let me tell you the story of an unforgettable moment I experienced just a few hours ago….
I volunteer at my local Jewish Community Center in Palo Alto, CA.
For the record,I am not Jewish, nor am I religious, but I respect the rights of those who wish to worship in any way they choose. I also think there is a lot to be learned through studying the history of every religion and its people.
The people where I volunteer are lovely and I love my job and get to help out during a fantastic, weekly cultural arts event called Community Tuesdays(open to the public).
Today, the program featured an amazingly talented singer and accordionist of Yiddish music, Jeanette Lewicki. Her show was entitled, Belarus to Brooklyn: A Time-Traveling Tour of Yiddish Song.
I wasn’t sure what to expect, but she led us through a history-rich, captivating tale of song and story that was both interesting and beautiful.
She explained each song’s translation, origin and any special history, prior to preforming each song in Yiddish. She eventually came to a particular song with a story old as time, about a woman, that had originally been recorded and/or sung by a man.
I will recount the introduction she gave as best I can:
“A young woman of meager means from a small village in the old country,comes to rest at the edge of a green river, holding a new baby close to her full breast.
She calls to the little fish in the river, so she can whisper to them a story. She has a secret to tell them. She wants to introduce them to the babe in her arms.
She tells the little fish that they will soon know and then forget her baby, who she will never forget. She drops her baby to the bottom of the river for the fish to feed upon and walks away.”
That was it.Continue reading