Hulyet, Hulyet Beyze Vintn

Howl, Howl, Raging Winds
הוליעט, הוליעט, בײזע װינטן

A worker’s song by poet Avrom Reyzen (1875-1953), originally entitled “Tsum vinter” (To winter). Words .and music published by Mikhl Gelbart (for mixed chorus) in sheet music by Jos. P. Katz, N.Y., 1916 and Y. Glatshteyn in Warsaw in 1918.

In his memoirs “Epizodn fun mayn lebn” (Episodes from My Life), Reisen recounts how in the winter of 1900 scenes of dire poverty moved him to write this poem. A. Litvak, a leader of the Jewish Labor Bund, recalls that in 1904-5 the workers themselves changed the last lines to express the hope that their hardships would end: “Winter will not last long, summer is not far off.”

Chana Krystal-Fryshdorf, a fighter in the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, describes a cultural gathering in the Ghetto: “Virovski, a well-known Bundist activist and teacher in the Yiddish schools in Lodz, concluded his lecture on Yiddish poets with Reisen’s poem ‘Hulyet, hulyet beyze vintn.’ Everyone was moved.” Chana Fryshdorf later informed compilers that Virovski’s recitation contained the optimistic last lines: “Winter will not last long, summer is not far off.”

Illustration of musical notes from the books


Howl, howl, raging winds,
Rule the world without restraints!
smash the branches, hurl the trees.
Do whatever you will.

Drive the birds from the fields
and chase them away.
Those that cannot fly far,
kill them on the spot.

Tear the shutters from the houses,
smash out the windowpanes.
If a candle burns somewhere in the dark,
extinguish it with rage.

Howl, howl, raging winds,
now is your time.
Winter will last a long time,
Summer is still far off.

Hulyet, hulyet, beyze vintn,
Fray bahersht di velt!
Brekht di tsvaygn, varft di beymer,
Tut vos aykh gefelt.

Traybt di feygl fun di felder
Un faryogt zey fort;
Di vos kenen vayt nisht flien,
Teyt zey oyfn ort.

Rayst di lodn fun di hayzlekh,
Shoybn brekht aroys;
Brent a likhtl ergets tunkl,
Lesht mit tsorn oys!

Hulyet, hulyet, beyze vintn,
Itst iz ayer tsaytl
Lang vet doyern der vinter,
Zumer iz nokh vayt!. . .

הוליעט, הוליעט, בײזע װינטן,
פֿרײַ באַהערשט די װעלט!
ברעכט די צװײַגן, װאַרפֿט די בײמער,
טוט װאָס אײַך געפֿעלט.

טרײַבט די פֿײגל פֿון די פֿעלדער
און פֿאַריאָגט זײ פֿאָרט;
די װאָס קענען װײַט נישט פֿליִען,
טײט זײ אױפֿן אָרט.

רײַסט די לאָדן פֿון די הײַזלעך,
שױבן ברעכט אַרױס;
ברענט אַ ליכטל ערגעץ טונקל,
לעשט מיט צאָרן אױס!

הוליעט, הוליעט, בײזע װינטן,
איצט איז אײַער צײַט!
לאַנג װעט דױערן דער װינטער
זומער איז נאָך װײַט!. . .

Song Title: Hulyet, Hulyet Beyze Vintn

Composer: Mikhl Gelbart
Composer’s Yiddish Name: מיכל געלבאַרט
Lyricist: Avrom Reisen
Lyricist’s Yiddish Name: אַבֿרהם רײזען
Time Period: Unspecified

This Song is Part of a Collection

Pearls of Yiddish Song Cover with Illustration of musicians playing instruments

Pearls of Yiddish Song

First published in 1988 as Pearls of Yiddish Song: Favorite Folk, Art and Theatre Songs, this anthology contains 115 songs. Some material had never been published, while others, included in rare song collections or sheet music, were largely inaccessible. The songs presented reflect Jewish life in Eastern Europe and the United States and depict childhood, love, family celebrations, poverty, work and struggle. There are also songs from the Hasidic and Maskilic movements, songs of Zion and of America, as well as songs from the Yiddish theater.

The title of this anthology derives from the weekly two-page feature column “Pearls of Yiddish Poetry,” which the compilers Yosl and Chana Mlotek initiated in 1970 in the Yiddish newspaper Der Forvertz (the Yiddish Daily Forward). Hundreds of readers from around the world — including authors, composers, singers, actors — became co-participants in this collective folk project and recalled melodies, lines, fragments, stanzas and their variants of songs, poems, and plays which they had heard in their youth. At first, readers sent in only written material. Later, they also taped songs on cassettes, many of whose melodies had, until then, never been recorded. They also identified and supplied missing information regarding lyricists, poets, and composers and described the circumstances surrounding the songs’ origins, their dissemination, diffusion and impact.

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