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Eli Tziyyon ! Anonymous
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Eli Tziyyon ! Anonymous
About the Piyu" About the Piyu"
Eli Tzion is the last piyut in the Ashkenazi collection of kinot and is customarily sung
in a recitative style by the whole community. In this kina, the poet turns to Zion,
likening her to a woman who has suffered both destructive and redemptive pain: the
pain of a young woman who is widowed, and the pain of a mother who brings new
life into the world. Taken as a whole, the poem is a mournful call out to Zion to lament
her tragic destruction. Only in the last verses do we come to understand that this
kina is also a call to God to hear the Jewish peoples cry. To conjure this mournful
call, the poet opens every stanza with alei and ends with ha, the the sounds of
howling, weeping and sighing.
Eli Tzion is the last piyut in the Ashkenazi collection of kinot and is customarily sung
in a recitative style by the whole community. In this kina, the poet turns to Zion,
likening her to a woman who has suffered both destructive and redemptive pain: the
pain of a young woman who is widowed, and the pain of a mother who brings new
life into the world. Taken as a whole, the poem is a mournful call out to Zion to lament
her tragic destruction. Only in the last verses do we come to understand that this
kina is also a call to God to hear the Jewish peoples cry. To conjure this mournful
call, the poet opens every stanza with alei and ends with ha, the the sounds of
howling, weeping and sighing.
Lament, Zion and her cities
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like a woman in her labor pains
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like a maiden girt in sackcloth
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for the husband of her youth.
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For the palace now deserted
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because of the sin of the sheep of her ocks
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and for the intrusion of Gods blasphemers
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into the chambers of her sanctuary.
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For the exile of Gods servants,
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the sweet singers of her songs,
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and for their blood which has been spilled
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like the waters of her rivers.
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For the lyrics of her dances,
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Translation from the Koren Mesorat Harav Kinot - Tzvi Hersh Weinrib 1
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Eli Tziyyon ! Anonymous
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Eli Tziyyon ! Anonymous
now silenced in her cities,
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and for the council now devastated,
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and the abolition of her high courts.
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For her daily sacrices
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and the redemption of her rst born,
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and for the delement of the Temples vessels
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and the altar of her incense.
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For the little children of her kings,
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the sons of David, her princes,
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and for their beauty which was darkened
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when she was divested of her crowns.
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For the glory that was dispelled
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at the time her shrines were destroyed,
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and for the oppressor who tormented
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and placed sackcloth around her waist.
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For the wounds and many blows
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with which her sainted ones were struck,
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and for the smashing upon the rock
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of her babes, her young ones.
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For the joy of her enemy
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Translation from the Koren Mesorat Harav Kinot - Tzvi Hersh Weinrib 2
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Eli Tziyyon ! Anonymous
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Eli Tziyyon ! Anonymous
rejoicing over her downfall,
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and for the torture of those once free,
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her nobleman, her pious ones.
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For the sin which diverted her footsteps
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from the cleared path
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and for her numerous communities,
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tarnished and charred.
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For the voices of those who mocker her
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as her corpses mounted,
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and to the scofng mob
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in the very midst of her Temple courtyards.
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For your name which is desecrated
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in the mouth of those who stand against her,
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and for the prayer which they shout to You,
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Hear and heed her words!
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Translation from the Koren Mesorat Harav Kinot - Tzvi Hersh Weinrib 3

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