web analytics
March 1, 2015 / 10 Adar , 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


Tevye in the Promised Land, Chapter Thirty-One: Hevedke the Jew

The next chapter of the award-winning novel.
Cover of Tevye in the Promised Land by Tzvi Fishman.

“How long can you expect Abba to stay cooped up like a chicken?” Bat Sheva asked.

“Where did he go?” Hava asked.

“To Morasha.”

“To Morasha? Is he crazy? Does he want to get sick?”

“God forbid,” another voice said. It was the tailor’s wife. In the confines of the tent, she could not help fom overhearing the conversation.

“Of course,” Hava said. “God forbid. But why did he go back to Morasha?”

Tevye had ridden off to Morasha with Elisha to make sure the guard they had left there was doing his job. He wasn’t. They found him lying in a puddle of blood with a bullet in his back. Shocked, they stared in silent wonder at the destruction they saw all around them. All of the houses had been burned down to the ground. All of the livestock and tools had been stolen. The vegetables and flowers in Shmuelik’s beloved garden lay trampled and uprooted. The Torah ark was smashed into pieces. Luckily, the settlers had taken the sacred scroll with them when they had left. Tevye and Elisha gazed at the devastation. The settlement of Morasha had vanished, as if the earth had swallowed it up.

“At least,” Tevye said, “There is one consolation.”

“What is that?” the Yemenite asked.

“They stole the animals too.”

His friend looked at him with a puzzled expression.

“The animals were diseased,” Tevye said. “Hopefully, the murderers and thieves will be too.”

         

Hava’s wedding was held on a chilly, moonlit evening in the Hebrew month of Shevat. Festive torchlights were lit in one of the orchards where the ceremony was to be held. The chuppah was ready and waiting. Everyone in the settlement turned out to welcome Rabbi Kook, who had journeyed all the way from Jaffa to officiate at the marriage. Crowned by a fur shtreimel which accentuated his regal appearance, the heralded Chief Rabbi took the time to exchange a greeting with each and every guest. As much as the settlers loved Rabbi Kook, he loved them for their devotion to building the land. More than that – he loved them simply because they were Jews. And had they been gentiles, he would have loved them just the same. Everyone whom God had created, Rabbi Kook loved. Once, he had confided to Nachman, that even people who fell into sin were deserving of love. Certainly not for the evil they did, but for whatever small good, because they too had been formed in God’s image.

How ironic life could be, Tevye thought! The scandal that had been his greatest shame was now the cause of his greatest honor. Taking his daughter’s hand, he led her to the wedding canopy, accompanied by the distinguished Rabbi. What an honor of honors it was for Tevye to stand beside the revered Rabbi Kook as he chanted the blessing over the wine and read out the formal wedding Ketubah agreement. The traditional wedding glass was broken, recalling the destruction of Jerusalem and how the joy of the bride and the groom couldn’t be complete until the Holy City was restored. With a cheer from the crowd, Issac became Hava’s one-hundred-percent kosher husband.

The festive wedding meal was held in the Zichron Yaacov community hall. Wine was plentiful, and the dancing was joyous. Tevye was in exceptionally high spirits, fulfilling, with great gusto, the mitzvah of rejoicing with the newlyweds. Hillel played his accordion alongside a clarinet player and a Hasid with a fiddle. The wedding guests danced and danced. A group of Russian Jews balanced bottles of wine on their heads, entertaining the chatan and kallah. Not to be upstaged, Elisha’s sons Ariel and Yehuda folded up newspapers into cones, lighted them with matches, and balanced the flaming torches on the tips of their noses – an act which drew enthusiastic applause from the crowd.

The groom hugged Tevye and called him father. Laughing, Tevye dragged Hava’s husband over to meet the Yemenite side of the family. If Tevye was Issac’s father, that made Elisha a grandfather of sorts to the groom! Could better proof be found that the Almighty was gathering His exiled children from the four corners of the earth? In the joy of the great celebration, all of the winter’s sorrow was gladly put aside, as King Solomon had said, there was “a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance.” There was enough sadness and tragedy in the life of a Jew. When an occasion of happiness fell out from the sky, a man had to seize it.

About the Author: Tzvi Fishman was awarded the Israel Ministry of Education Prize for Creativity and Jewish Culture for his novel "Tevye in the Promised Land." For the past several years, he has written a popular and controversial blog at Arutz 7. A wide selection of his books are available at Amazon. The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not represent the views of The Jewish Press


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Tevye in the Promised Land, Chapter Thirty-One: Hevedke the Jew”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife at Ben Gurion Airport as they depart for the US on March 1, 2015, ahead of Netanyahu's speech on Tuesday, before a joint session of Congress.
Netanyahu’s Speech to Congress – Blocked from U.S. Prime Time, Perfect for Israel
Latest Sections Stories
Golan Wine Medals

‘Double Gold’ awarded to 2012 Yarden Heights wine & 2011 Yarden Merlot Kela Single Vineyard.

Niehaus-022715

One should not give the money before Purim morning or after sunset.

Mendlowitz-022715-Basket

The mishloach manos of times gone by were sometimes simple and sometimes elaborate, but the main focus was on the preparation of the delicious food they contained.

Astaire-022715-Countryside

One of the earliest special Purims we have on record was celebrated by the Jews of Granada and Shmuel HaNagid, the eleventh-century rav, poet, soldier and statesman, and one of the most influential Jews in Muslim Spain.

Jews, wake up! Stop educating the world and start educating yourselves.

The lessons conform to the sensitivities and needs of the Orthodox community…

The program took on special significance as it marked not only the first anniversary of Rebbetzin Kudan’s levayah but also the 27th yahrzeit of Rebbetzin Chaya Mushka Schneerson, a”h.

It captures the love of the Jewish soul as only Shlomo Hamelech could portray it – and as only Rabbi Miller could explain it.

Erudite and academic, drawing from ancient and modern sources, the book can be discussed at the Shabbos table as well as in kollel.

I’m here to sit next to you and help you through this Purim with three almost-too-easy mishloach manot ideas, all made with cost-conscious paper bags.

Kids want to be like their friends, and they want to give and get “normal” mishloach manos stocked with store-bought treats.

Whenever he did anything loving for me, I made a big deal about it.

“OMG, it’s so cute, you’re so cute, everything is so cute.”

A program that started with a handful of volunteers has grown exponentially to include students from a wider array of backgrounds.

More Articles from Tzvi Fishman

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/books/the-book-shelf/tevye-in-the-promised-land-books/tevye-in-the-promised-land-chapter-thirty-one-hevedke-the-jew/2013/03/19/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: