An administrative detainee's poem: The Hilltop Youth

Meir Ettinger wrote this poem in Hebrew, with literary merit and flowing rhymes. Recently sent to Arutz Sheva, the English translation preserves the ideas, so readers can get to know the writer's feelings, but is not on the level of the Hebrew.

Meir Ettinger,

Ettinger
Ettinger
INN: Kol Hayehudi

You know, it's not easy for us to be heard

The media hardly allows us a word

And he who dares say that the media's wrong

Is ground into bits by their teeth and their tongue.

   

They have a system that's oiled to perfection

One schemes, one directs, then they pen a confession

And he who dares question their machinations

Will find out that his past needs "investigations."

   

Still, we will try to explain a thing or two

In the hope that you'll realize it all rings true -

No, I don't mind repeating our story to you

I'm in prison for months, there's nothing to do.

   

If you've listened to all the distortions of truth

Then you shudder at hearing the words “hilltop youth.”

   

Someday we will tell you about the machine

That processes facts and decides what they mean

But for now, here's a message we hope will hit home

(We're writing our story in rhyme, like a poem.).

   

The hilltop youth – you won't hear in the news -

Have hearts filled with love for their fellow Jews

And when they noticed the emperor’s clothes were awry

They couldn't, like others, just let him pass by.

   

In their young minds many questions arose

When they saw that the emperor lacked more than his clothes

True, they had no proper contacts and methods and means

But were willing to try - after all, they are teens.

   

The truth they were missing, that is what they sought

To fill the lacunae in what they'd been taught

To them life was simple, they needed no frills

They went out to find truth on the bare, rocky hills.

   

Down below was erudition, with all degrees listed,

Could that be the reason so much had been twisted?

Only when young can this search be undertaken

We could step back from the crowd and try to awaken.

   

Families murdered on roads? In our land? – we asked why

We know it's preventable, if you really try

Perhaps someone up there has a head that is hollow

That doesn't keep him from leading – but why do you follow?

    

And when no one could give us a good explanation

It deepened our fear for the state of our nation

And led us to feelings of isolation

If matters so crucial are covered in plaster,

It's no wonder foundations just crack all the faster.

   

Then many fine youths came to join and do good

Feel the pain of the nation - as all of us should

The establishment shunned them and on them heaped blame

And everyone else rushed to join in the game.

   

The youth on the hilltops were stunned by this ploy

Why the unleashed aggression, the need to destroy?

How could adults abrogate their own rules

And behave towards their children in ways that were cruel?

   

At first they had gazed on the children in wonder

But when truth posed a threat, they tore them asunder

For they know by themselves what we know very well

That power and honor is what makes their hearts swell.

   

We must have stumbled on some great mystery

Maybe someone is trying to rewrite history

Otherwise there is no way to fathom

What led them down to this moral chasm.

   

How turn evil into good and good into evil?

They gathered against us as if we're the devil

Why create a new story every few days?

When we'd watch the news, we'd be simply amazed.

   

True, we do dream of ending our people's disgrace

Hoping one day to see the Temple in its rightful place.

We believe that all of Israel is our eternal possession

And want our leaders to say no to secession.

   

This is what Jews prayed for throughout the years

Through gas and fire and blood and tears

So why do they treat us as if we're deranged?

What Jewish aspiration has changed?

    

Why did they arrest us with such needless violence?

And leave us to languish in cells of silence?

Police made a mockery of the law

And when they caused us pain, broad smiles we saw.

    

Why does terror continue despite Tzahal forces

While the world keeps silent and its media  endorses?

Our leaders with stopping the terror just toy

But command the army, “Settlement hilltops destroy!” 

   

This policy did not emerge out of the blue

With every new government, it's resurrected anew

Once again the British White Paper comes to pass

As each new government hopes that their power will last.

   

If someone notices that the emperor is sans his attire

He becomes a threat to be extinguished like fire

All the media join to burn the witch at the stake

With all of the threats and wild claims they can make.

   

You may feel that I am too rash in penning these words

But what we have here is a theater of the absurd.

   

Just one last question allow me to bring:

If my being free is the threatening thing

Maybe something very fundamental is the matter

If I, a singer at heart, am deemed the Mad Hatter.

   

All right, enough, I will silence my breath

Lest jailers administratively detain this bad poet to death.




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