Sitting in the park, on a bench under the close-woven domes of trees painted in different green shades...children running about and playing around me.
A grey-haired old woman pushes an empty baby buggy before her. On my left, a column of water climbs from the garden pond towards the blue sky, and the breeze takes some cold fine drops from it, and gently caresses with them my face.
The breeze slides over the water in the pound that now looks like a small sea. Where does that breeze come from? Does it come from the East? Why has it caressed my face with water of the sea?
The greenish brown of palm trees alternates with the purple color of the mimosas under the pale blue in the sky, now the sunlight lit everything, and impregnates the world with burning paintbrushes. The palm trees have been lit like candles crowned with fire.
It is nice here but sorrow coming from the past wants to dye everything. The formidable loneliness in the middle of the Universe! In Sefarad is the fragrance of the grass. In Sefarad is the wheat being threshed on the round threshing floors, surrounded by lively voices sharing the rhythm of the trotting horse.
From there, from Eretz Israel, from the other side of the Great Sea, sitting in front of Sefarad hidden behind the horizon I remember the lonely rocks, stones, and trees round the threshing floor like silent witnesses of a suffering Jewish broken heart...
A Spanish history lesson. I do not know Spanish. I don't want to neglect my Spanish speaking familia on this website. Barzilai doesn't have time to review all of these videos. I hope you like it and hope it is accurate?
I recommend the book The Forgetting River by Doreen Carvajal. She is an internationally renoun reporter and wrote about Sephardic history! She went to Spain for her research and is part of the Jewish Awakening! I read that she is converting to Judaism. This is several years later after she wrote her book.
Though it is noon, the sun remains hidden behind the light grey clouds. I like those clouds. Some of them are decorated with a darker grey edging and others have a brilliant heart. The ones near me are rushing somewhere while the others above them remain up static there in the sky.
All of them together seem to me as if an unhappy painter was nervously mixing grey nuances on his palette...but I get somehow a bit cheerful observing from my old small window, the tiny raindrops falling gently on the tiles in the roofs of the lower houses in front of me.
Above the roofs the green fields are looking at me. They are there, sleeping at the feet of the mountains, quietly as if they were dead.
Leaning my arms on the old woody windowsill; I can't help feeling tired and upset. Who can see what I see? Who can here remember the chants in the Synagogue? I remember the woman covered up with a modest robe, which always was in a hurry when passing by my door. She was carrying oil to light the menorah when the Kehila had gathered.
But just now my narrow street is fairly quiet and I can't hear the chants anymore...
Today, I won't be able to see the first three stars in the sky. I will light my candles soon because it's getting darker and darker...
There you are! My candles on the windowsill! And after covering my head....Baruch Ata Adonai.......ner shel Shabbat! ..one and....two ! Done!
Now, look at how beautiful the shine from my two candles! They shine in front of the world and light it and enlighten it!
During those cold winters, my mother and I, hand in hand, entered the old church. But before, I always wanted to puff some breath against the yellowy light falling from the bulb hanging above the lintel, to enjoy my vapor being absorbed by the wintry mist.
On opening the old door of black wood in the gloomy entrance, a deeply penetrating smell of incense invaded me always. It was then when something started insufflating through my nostrils and a well-known upsetting being was born in me.
High gothic vaults appeared above me and gothic chapels surrounded me... everything built in brown stone though the ashlars in the vaults remained always almost black.
The bright lit side chapels shone with their huge golden frames of religious paintings and the multicolored robes of the frozen statues.
But inexplicably, my eyes always concentrated on the naked walls and floors.
I asked myself how many Jewish souls had dragged their bodies on these floors... because they were Jewish but they didn't know.
I asked myself how many Jewish souls had seen the very same stones that I was seeing and stepped on the very same stones that I was stepping on at that moment... on their way to the stake to be burned after the Sunday mass.
And I approached one of the columns, and touched one of its ashlars, and said to myself: "tell me!” “Has a Jew ever looked at you?” “I mean in the middle ages!” “Did the Jewish soul see you when being forced to the burning stake?” “Did this rocky floor support the delicate feet of the Inquisition's victims?”
“And you, there up, in the petrified heaven embracing these naves... have you ever witnessed the horror of the Inquisition?"
And I suddenly felt a mysterious cold freezing my heart.
The most emblematic jewish partisan's anthem.
ZOG NIT KAYNMOL (Never say this is the end of the road./ Nunca digas que es el final del camino).
Composer: Hersch Glik.
Performed by the very acclaimed israeli singer Chava Alberstein, from her album "Yiddish Songs".
Edited in Israel.