Merthyr Tydfil Jewish Community

Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales

Page created: 19 August 2003
Latest revision or update: 27 February 2013


Written and Read by Grahame Davies, and published in his anthology, "The Chosen  People - Wales and the Jews."
Originally written in Welsh it has been translated into English
Pictures contributed by: Wendy Bellany

Click the play button on the left for the English Version or on the right for the Welsh Version

<a href="">Play English clip</a>                    <a href="">Play Welsh clip</a>


Even in death
you are set apart,
in your special fold of land
on the slope of Cefn Cilsanws.

In the earth of the South, David's lineage;
the Hebrew script,
the unfamiliar dates
and the little stone cairns
turn a part of Wales into Canaan.

Refugees from the Egypt's of the continent
among the nations of the wilderness of coal;
the challenge of your apartness
was a judgement day to us,
who had the choice
to welcome or to crucify the stranger.

Here your generations scratched a living
before venturing, dying, departing,
and leaving, by today,
only your empty synagogue,
and your dead in the land.

Although it's years since you raised your tabernacles from our midst,
I feel - 
when I see the rocks of your pre-celtic covenant
on these hills -
that it is not you but us
who are short-lived, who are sojourners.

If only we had a tithe of your tenacity,
of your talent for overcoming evil;
if only we had a scrap of the pride
that carried the ark of your language and history
through every desert, to the land of your promise.

For bringing the fact of the chosen people
to our land of fake Bethels and Salems;
for the wealth of your wandering religion in our memory;
for drawing the glance of the God of Israel to this valley,
for setting its name on the landscape of your long  pilgrimage;
for bringing the miracle of your survival to us,
in the earth below us, shalom.


Hyd yn oed mewn marwolaeth
yr ydych ar wah‚n,
yn eich corlan arbennig o dir
ar lethr Cefn Cilsanws.

Ym mhridd y De, llinach Dafydd;
a'r ysgrifen Hebraeg,
u dyddiadau dieithr
a'r carneddau bach cerrig
yn troi darn o Gymru'n Ganaan.

Ffoaduriaid o eifftiau'r cyfandir
ymysg cenhedloedd yr anialwch glo;
'roedd her eich arwahanrwydd
yn ddydd barn inni,
a ninnau ‚ dewis gennym
groesawu neu groeshoelio'r dieithr.

Yma bu eich cenedlaethau'n crafu byw
cyn mentro, marw neu fynd,
gan adael, erbyn hyn,
dim ond eich synagog wag,
a'ch meirw yn y tir.

Er codi eich tabernaclau o'n ers blynyddoedd
mi deimlaf -
wrth weld creigiau'ch cyfamod cyn-geltaidd
ar y bryniau hyn -
mai nid y chi ond y ni
sn'n fyrhoedlog, dros-dro.

Bydded inni ddegwm o'ch dygnwch,
o'ch dawn i oresgyn drwg;
bydded inni fymryn o'r balchder
a gariai arch eich iaith a'ch hanes
drwy bob anialwch, i wlad eich addewid.

Am ddod ‚ ffaith y bobl etholedig
i wlad ein Bethel a'n Salem ffug,
am gyfoeth eich crefydd crwydrol yn ein cof,
am ddwyn golygon Duw Israel i'r dyffryn hwn,
a gosod ei enw ar dirwedd eich pererindod hir;
am ddod ‚ gwyrth eich geroesiad atom,
islaw'n y pridd, shalom.



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