A Sheyner Tog

A Beautiful Day
אַ שײנער טאָג

Words by Jacob Adler (1873-1973) also known by his pen name bornKovner; composer unknown. The text was published in Abrasha Vayner’s collection Undzer gezang (Warsaw, 1930) with the title “Zikhroynes” (Memories). The words and music were printed in the Undzer gezang collection of 1947. According to compiler Yosl Mlotek and friends, it was popular in Poland in the 1930s. H. Ritterband also set the poem to music.

Illustration of musical notes from the books


A beautiful day, a spring day
awakens a memory;
A beautiful day, a golden one,
from my childhood years.

I’m playing in our little garden,
the sour cherry trees are blooming,
my cheeks are flaming red,
and my eyes are shining.

My darling mother tells me
not to forget
that as soon as the sun sets
I should come and eat.

My father listens, beaming,
and smiles a little smile,
and tells me: For Heaven’s sake,
don’t straggle down to the creek!

A sheyner tog, a frilings tog,
Vakht oyf in mayn zikorn,
A sheyner tog, a goldener,
Fun mayne kinder-yorn.

lkh shtif in undzer gertele,
Di vaynshl-beymer blien,
Es flamen mayne bekelekh,
Di eygelekh, zay glien.

Es zogt mir on di mameshi,
lkh zol zikh nisht fargesn,
Vi nor di zun vet untergeyn,
Dan zol ikh kumen esn.

Der tate hert zikh ayn un kvelt,
Un git derbay a shmeykhl,
Un zogt mir on: Leman-Hashem,
Farkrikh nisht vayt tsum taykhl!

אַ שײנער טאָג, אַ פֿרילינגס טאָג,
װאַכט אױף אין מײַן זיכרון,
א שײנער טאָג, אַ גאָלדענער,
פֿון מײַנע קינדער-יאָרן.

איך שטיף אין אונדזער גערטעלע,
די װײַנשל-בײמער בליען,
עס פֿלאַמען מײַנע בעקעלעך,
די אײגעלעך, זײ גליען.

עס זאָגט מיר אָן די מאַמעשי,
איך זאָל זיך נישט פֿאַרגעסן,
װי נאָר די זון װעט אונטערגײן,
דאַן זאָל איך קומען עסן.

דער טאָטע הערט זיך אײַן און קװעלט,
און גיט דערבײַ אַ שמײכל,
און זאָגט מיר אָן: – למען השם,
פֿאַרקריך נישט װוײַט צום טײַכל!ּ

Song Title: A Sheyner Tog

Composer: Unknown
Composer’s Yiddish Name: Unknown
Lyricist: Jacob Adler
Lyricist’s Yiddish Name: ב. קאָװנער
Time Period: Unspecified

This Song is Part of a Collection

Songs of Generations: New Pearls of Yiddish Song

The Songs of Generations: New Pearls of Yiddish Song anthology comprises songs that were either never printed before or appeared in rare and inaccessible publications — sometimes in different versions and without proper sources. Most of the songs in this book were submitted by readers of Chana and Yosl’s column “Perl fun der yidisher poezye” (Pearls of Yiddish Poetry) in the Yiddish newspaper Der Forverts (The Forward), initiated in October, 1970. Over 25 years, thousands of songs were collected in correspondence and on cassettes from readers throughout the world, and they represent a veritable national Yiddish song archive. Chana Mlotek, in her introduction, writes, “In the course of years the inquiries, contributions and enthusiasm of these readers have kept our own interest unflagging and have reinforced our dedication to this effort. And in recent years our participants have also been augmented by new readers from the former Soviet Russia, who receive our newspaper there or from newly-arrived immigrants in this country and Israel.”

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