Verse > Anthologies > Joseph Friedlander, comp. > The Standard Book of Jewish Verse
Joseph Friedlander, comp.  The Standard Book of Jewish Verse.  1917.
Chanukah Lights
By P. M. Raskin
I KINDLED my eight little candles,
  My Chanukah-candles—and lo!
Fair visions and dreams half-forgotten
  To me came of years long ago.
I musingly gazed at my candles;        5
  Meseemed in their quivering flames
In golden, in fiery letters
  I read the old glorious names,
The names of our heroes immortal,
  The noble, the brave, and the true,        10
A battle-field saw I in vision
  Where many were conquered by few.
Where trampled in dust lay the mighty,
  Judea’s proud Syrian foe;
And Judas, the brave Maccabæus,        15
  In front of his army I saw.
His eyes shone like bright stars of heaven,
  Like music rang out his strong voice:
“Brave comrades, we fought and we conquered,
  Now let us, in God’s name, rejoice!        20
“We conquered—but know, O brave comrades,
  No triumph is due to the sword!
Remember our glorious watchword,
  ‘For People and Towns of the Lord!’”
He spoke, and from all the four corners        25
  An echo repeated each word;
The woods and the mountains re-echoed:
  “For People and Towns of the Lord!”
And swiftly the message spread, saying:
  “Judea, Judea is free,        30
Re-kindled the lamp in the Temple,
  Re-kindled each bosom with glee!”
*    *    *    *    *
My Chanukah-candles soon flickered,
  Around me was darkness of night;
But deep in my soul I felt shining        35
  A heavenly-glorious light.

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