web analytics
March 3, 2015 / 12 Adar , 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


Tevye in the Promised Land, Chapter Twenty-Four: Morasha

Tevye.500

It wasn’t that Tevye felt lonely. He had other men to talk to, and, like in the past, he still enjoyed a good conversation with a horse or a cow, but neither a man nor a beast was a woman, and a mattress of hay could never take the place of a bed.

“Why don’t you marry again?” Hillel asked him during one of their frequent late evening walks.

It was one of those magical nights that are so unique to the Holy Land, when you feel like you can reach out and touch thousands of stars. It was during these tranquil nocturnal strolls, or during his secluded night hours of guard duty, that Tevye most felt the full wonder of life. Under the vastness of the heavens, when the labors of the day gave way to peaceful contemplation of night, a man could feel his smallness in the universe, and experience the greatness of his Creator.

“Marry again?” Tevye asked. “What for?”

“A wife is better than a cow, is she not?”

“That depends on the woman, and the cow,” Tevye answered. “Fortunately, I was married to an angel. No woman could ever replace her.”

“The Torah says that it is not good for a man to live alone,” Hillel reminded.

“So why don’t you marry?” Tevye asked.

“What woman wants a lame minstrel like me?” Hillel said with a sigh.

“What woman wants a broken down horse of a milkman like me?”

“You’re still as strong as an ox,” the musician said.

“An ox with one foot in the grave,” Tevye tiredly answered.

“In this world, we all have one foot in the grave.”

“Comfort me with your music instead of your speeches,” Tevye said. “Besides, if I were to marry, my angel Golda would haunt me the rest of my life. Do you think she wants a strange woman sharing my bed? I’d rather sleep with the cows than awaken the wrath of my Golda.”

Hillel took up a tune on his harmonica, and the two bachelors walked on accompanied by the lonely chords of his song.

Weeks passed. Spurred on by the challenge of transforming the rugged terrain into fertile orchards and vineyards, the Jews of Morasha kept to their mission with a passionate fervor. As Tevye guided his team of horses and plow along the long furrows which would one day sprout bushels of corn, he thought of his children and grandchildren. Everything he was doing, he was doing for them. And for Golda. Often he would talk to her out loud, to take his mind off of the pains in his back. He didn’t remember his Golda speaking about the Land of Israel, but in his imagination, he built it into her dream. This is what she would have wanted for her children. Her voice rang in his ears, encouraging him, helping him to hold the plow in line, helping him to believe that the seeds he was planting would truly grow into corn stalks and wheat. With her great faith in him, nothing could break him, nor dampen the spirit of optimism which he put into all of his labor.

Not that everything was all roses. Almost nightly, there were discussions about abandoning the area to search out a better irrigated site, but the settlers decided to stay with the hope that their work would be blessed from Above. Whenever LeClerc visited the new settlement to see what progress had been made, all of the settlers crowded around him with a chorus of demands and complaints. They were short of manpower, short of horses, and short of tools. They had been promised 150 square dunams of land apiece, but had received only seventy-five. Shipments of meat which were supposed to be sent from Zichron Yaacov rarely arrived, and their stock of medicine and bandages was depleted. Finally, the distance they had to travel to their fields, day after day, was a punishment that was taking a toll on everyone, including their mules and their horses. LeClerc made notes in a pad and promised to pass on the information to the appropriate officials in Paris.

“Paris?!” Tevye exclaimed. “We’re the ones living here. We know what we need. What do our problems have to do with some clerk sitting on his tochis in Paris?”

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 Twenty-Four: Morasha”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
President Barack Obama and Iran do not speak the same language..
Any Deal Is a Bad Deal
Latest Sections Stories
Schonfeld-logo1

There is a point that many parenting books miss: children do more for us than we do for them.

Brigitte Gabriel

Brigitte was a nine-year-old girl when Islamic militants launched an assault on a Lebanese military base and destroyed her home.

Respler-022715

The husband needs to make some changes!

Purim is a fantastic time for fantasies, so I hope you won’t mind my fantasizing about how easy life would be if kids would prefer healthy cuisine over sweets. Imagine waking up to the call of “Mommy, when will my oatmeal be ready?”… As you rush to ladle out the hot unsweetened cereal, you rub […]

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

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

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.

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 was only in the reign of George III (1760-1820) that Jews became socially acceptable in Britain, and Nathan became music master to Princess Charlotte and musical librarian to King George IV.

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.

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-twenty-four-morasha/2013/01/28/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: