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Lost in Translation

I really didn’t think that Yehuda Halevi was within my range as a translator, but this came out quite well:

יְפֵה נוֹף מְשׂוֹשׂ תֵּבֵל קִרְיָה לְמֶלֶךְ רָב.
לָךְ נִכְסְפָה נַפְשִׁי מִפַּאֲתֵי מַעְרָב!
הֲמוֹן רַחֲמַי נִכְמָר כִּי אֶזְכְּרָה קֶדֶם,
כְּבוֹדֵךְ אֲשֶׁר גָּלָה וְנָוֵךְ אֲשֶׁר חָרָב.
וּמִי יִתְּנֵנִי עַל כַּנְפֵי נְשָׁרִים, עַד
אֲרַוֶּה בְדִמְעָתִי עֲפָרֵך וְיִתְעָרָב!
דְּרַשְׁתִּיךְ, וְאִם מַלְכֵּךְ אֵין בָּךְ וְאִם בִּמְקוֹם
צֳרִי גִּלְעֲדֵך – נָחָשׁ שָׂרָף וְגַם עַקְרָב.
הֲלֹא אֶת-אֲבָנַיִךְ אֲחוֹנֵן וְאֶשָּׁקֵם
וְטַעַם רְגָבַיִךְ לְפִי מִדְּבַשׁ יֶעְרָב!

Fair hill-top, world’s rejoicing, city of the Mighty King,
I long for you with all my soul from distant Western lands!
It grieves me to remember how you were in days of old:
Your glory, now in exile, and your temple which is ruined.
Let me fly on wings of eagles till I come to you and water
Your dry dust, and mix it with my tears!
How I searched for you! Even though you have no king,
And scorpions and snakes instead of balm of Gilead,
I will stroke your stones and kiss them, and your earth
Will be sweeter than the taste of honey in my mouth!

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