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My dear lovely Jews, I stand here today,
One hundred and twenty years old, so they say
Though I don’t remember the date of my birth
I’m feeling just how long I’ve been on this earth.
Soon you will cross to the land over there,
But my own destiny – well, I’m sure you’re aware,
That I cannot go over, I’ll remain on this side,
With the memories, here, of all those who’ve died.
But your new generation will not be alone,
Nor into the enemies’ clutches be thrown,
Hashem will cross first, ahead of your ranks,
(though He’d like it so much if you’d later say thanks).
Not just from Hashem, but there’s help close at hand,
From a leader who trembles with you on the sand,
Who raises his staff and says, “Follow me through!
Whatever Hashem says comes next, we will do!”
Be strong then, and quick – fleet-footed and brave,
From the giants and Amorites surely He’ll save,
He’ll never forget you, He’ll steady your aim,
But never lose sight of Him; utter his name.
He lays you a banquet and freely you’ll choose –
Choose death? No, choose LIFE – a gift you can use,
To spend your life with Him and reap His rewards,
Thwarting His enemies, smashing their swords.
Be strong and courageous; your leader in truth,
Yehoshuah, the one whom I chose as a youth;
Chazak ve’ematz, he’ll call out when you’re frail,
Be strong and hold fast, and you’ll always prevail.