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בַּשָּׁנָה הַבָּאָה | baShanah haBa’ah (Next Year), an elegy by Ehud Manor for his brother killed during the War of Attrition (1968)


Source (Hebrew)Translation (English)
בַּשָּׁנָה הַבָּאָה
נֵשֵׁב עַל הַמִּרְפֶּסֶת
וְנִסְפֹּר צִפֳּרִים נוֹדְדוֹת
Next year
We’ll sit on the porch
And count migrating birds
יְלָדִים בְּחֻפְשָׁה
יְשַׂחֲקוּ תּוֹפֶסֶת
בֵין הַבַּיִת לְבֵין הַשָּׂדוֹת.
Children on vacation
Will play tag
Between the house and the fields.
עוֹד תִּרְאֶה עוֹד תִּרְאֶה
כַּמָּה טוֹב יִהְיֶה
בַּשָּׁנָה בַּשָּׁנָה הַבָּאָה
You will yet see, you will yet see
How good it will be
Next year.
עֲנָבִים אֲדֻמִּים
יַבְשִׁילוּ עַד הָעֶרֶב
וְיֻגְּשׁוּ צוֹנְנִים לַשֻּׁלְחָן
Red grapes
Will ripen till the evening
And will be served chilled to the table.
וְרוּחוֹת רְדוּמִים
יִשְׂאוּ אֶל אֵם הַדֶּרֶךְ
עִתּוֹנִים יְשָׁנִים וְעָנָן
And languid winds
Will carry to the crossroads
Old newspapers and a cloud.
בַּשָּׁנָה הַבָּאָה
נִפְרֹשׂ כַּפּוֹת יָדַיִם
מוּל הָאוֹר הַנִּגָּר הַלָּבָן
Next year
We will spread out our hands
Towards the radiant light.
אֲנָפָה לְבָנָה
תִּפְרֹשׂ בָּאוֹר כְּנָפַיִם
וְהַשֶּׁמֶשׁ תִּזְרַח בְּתוֹכָן
A white heron
Like a light will spread her wings
And within them the sun will rise.
עוֹד תִּרְאֶה…
You will yet see…

“baShanah haBa’ah” (Next Year) by Ehud Manor (1941-2005) was first published in 1970 as sung with music by Nurit Hirsch and performed by the duo Ilan & Ilanit (Hanna Dresner-Tzakh and Shlomo Zach). The song was written by Manor in memory of his younger brother, Yehuda Wiener (1949-1968), who was killed in a tank battle by Egyptian gunfire in the Sinai Desert during the War of Attrition. We are not certain whether the English translation appearing in David Breakstone and Cindy Jochnowitz’s The Israel Experience Book (1977), p.242, was by Manor or remains uncredited.


“Bashana haBa’ah” by Ehud Manor (The Israel Experience Book 1977), p.242




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