The Ballad of the Four Sons (to the tune of Oh my Darlin' Clementine)

None Provided

Ben Aronin

Hebrew Lyrics

Said the father to his children, "At the seder you will dine"
"You will eat your fill of matza, You will drink four cups of wine."
Now this father had no daughters, but his sons they numbered four.
One was wise and one was wicked, one was simple and a bore.
And the fourth was sweet and winsome, he was young and he was small,
While his brothers asked the questions, He could scarcely speak at

Said the wise son to his father, "Could you please explain the laws,
Of the customs of the seder, could you please explain the cause?"
And the father proudly answered, "Every man himself must see,
In every age and generation as if he himself were freed."

Then the wicked son said wickedly, "What does all this mean to you?"
And the father's voice was bitter as his grief and anger grew.
"If yourself you don't consider as a son of Israel,
Then for you this has no meaning, you could be a slave as well."

Then the simple son said simply, "What is this?" and quietly,
The good father told his offspring, "We were freed from slavery."

And the youngest son was silent For he was not very bold.
But his eyes grew wide with wonder as the Pesach tale was told.

Now dear children heed the lesson and remember ever more.
The good father and his children and his sons that numbered four.


Published in "A Community Haggadah," Copyright 1951 by Eden Publishers.


Added August 16th, 2000