This is part of a popular song originally titled Tra-la-lo-lo, written by the famous Hebrew-Yiddish poet Zalman Shneour (1887-1959) in 1909. It was included with the music in M. Kipnis’ collection of 1918.

Illustration of musical notes from the books


In a wood by the stream, daisies were growing,
small and alone —
They were like little suns with little white beams,
little white ones, tra-la-la-la.

Khavele walked quietly, dreamily,
with her gold-blond braid let out,
and her neck uncovered, humming and singing
a little song: “Tra-la-la-la.”

And a young man came up to her, dark complexioned,
with hair as black as pitch;
his eyes blazed and he answered her merrily,
he answered her: “Tra-la-la-la.”

“What are you looking for? What have you lost?
What do you seek in the grass?”
“I am looking for daisies,” Khavele blushed,
she blushed, tra-la-la-la.

“You are still looking, and I’ve already found
the prettiest daisy in the wood,
a daisy with a braid and with eyes like sapphires
with eyes, tra-la-la-la.”

“Oh, leave me be, it’s forbidden, Mother says it’s forbidden,
My mother is old, and is mean,”
“Who cares about your mother? There are only trees here,
only trees, tra-la-la-la.”

“Do you love me?” “I love you?”
“Are you ashamed?” “I am ashamed!”
“Oh, love me and be ashamed and don’t say anything,
and see how pitch black ones mix with golden curls
with golden ones, tra-la-la-la.”

The sun has set, the young man — gone,
and Khavele is still sitting in the wood.
She looks off in the distance and murmurs dreamily,
her little song: tra-la-la-la.

In veldl baym taykhl, dort zaynen gevaksn
Margaritkelekh, elnt un kleyn —
Vi kleyninke zunen mit vaysinke shtraln,
Mit vaysinke, tra-la-la-la.

Gegangen iz Khavele shtil un farkholemt,
Tselozn di gold-blonde tsep, —
Dos heldzl antbloyzt un gemurmlt, gezungen
A lidele: tra-la-la-la.

Do kumt ir antkegn a bokher a shvartser,
Mit lokn mit shvartse, vi pekh;
Er flamt mit di oygn un entfert ir lustik,
Un entfert ir: tra-la-la-la.

— Vos zukhstu do, meydl? vos hostu farlorn?
Vos vilstu gefinen in groz?
— lkh zukh margaritkes, — farroytlt zikh Khave,
Farroytlt zikh tra-la-la-la.

— Du zukhst nokh? un ikh hob shoyn take gefunen
Di shenste margaritke in vald,
A margaritke mit tsep un mit oygn safirn,
Mit eygelekh tra-la-la-la.

— O, loz mikh, men tor nit; di mame zogt m’tor nit,
Mayn mame iz alt un iz beyz.
– Vu mame? vos mame? do zaynen nor beymer,
Nor beymelekh tra-la-la-la.

— Du libst mikh? — lkh lib dikh!
— Du shemst zikh? — lkh shem zikh!
— O lib mikh un shem dikh un shvayg.
Un ze vi es mishn zikh pekh-shvartse kroyzn
Mit goldene. . . tra-la-la-la.

Di zun iz fargangen, der bokher – farshvundn,
Un Khavele zitst nokh in vald.
Zi kukt in der vaytns un murmlt farkholemt
Dos lidele: tra-la-la-la.

אין װעלדל בײַם טײַכל, דאָרט זײַנען געװאַקסן
מאַרגאַריטקעלעך, עלנט און קלײן —
װי קלײנינקע זונען, מיט װײַסינקע שטראַלן,
מיט װײַסינקע טראַ-לאַ־לאַ-לאַ.

געגאַנגען איז חוהלה שטיל און פֿאַרחלומט,
צעלאָזן די גאָלד-בלאַָנדע צעפּ, —
דאָס העלדזל אַנטבלױזט און געמורמלט, געזונגען
א לידעלע: טראַ-לאַ-לאַ-לאַ.

דאָ קומט איר אַנטקעגן אַ בחור אַ שװאַרצער,
מיט לאָקן מיט שװאַרצע וױ פּעך,
ער פֿלאַמט מיט די אױגן און ענטפֿערט איר לוסטיק,
און ענטפֿערט איר: טראַ-לאַ-לאַ־לאַ.

— װאָס זוכסטו דאָ, מײדל? װאָס האָסטו פֿאַרלױרן?
װאָס װילסטו געפֿינען אין גראָז?
— איך זוך מאַרגאַריטקעס, פֿאַררױטלט זיך חוה,
פֿאַררױטלט זיך טראַ-לאַ-לאַ–לאַ–לאַ.

— דו זוכסט נאָך? און איך האָב שױן טאַקע געפֿונען
די שענסטע מאַרגאַריטקע אין װאַלד,
אַ מאַרגאַריטקע מיט צעפּ און מיט אױגן סאַפֿירן,
מים אײגעלעך טראַ-לאַ-לאַ-לאַ.

— אָ, לאָז מיך, מען טאָר ניט; די מאַמע זאָגט, מ’טאָר ניט,
מײַן מאַמע איז אַלט און איז בײז.
— װוּ מאַמע? װאָס מאַמע? דאָ זײַנען נאַר בײמער,
נאָר בײמעלעך טראַ-לאַ–לאַ–לאַ.

— דו ליבסט מיך? — איך ליב דיך! — דו שעמסט דיך?
— איך שעם מיך!
— אָ ליב מיך און שעם דיך און שװײַג.
און זע װי עס מישן זיך פּעך-שװאַרצע קרױזן
מיט גאָלדענע. . . טראַ–לאַ-לאַ-לאַ,

די זון איז פֿאַרגאַנגען, דער בחור — פֿאַרשװוּנדן,
און חוהלע זיצט נאָך אין װאַלד.
זי קוקט אין דער װײַטנס און מורמלט פֿאַרחלומט
דאָס לידעלע: טראַ-לאַ-לאַ-לאַ.

Song Title: Margaritkelekh

Composer: Unknown
Composer’s Yiddish Name: Unknown
Lyricist: Zalman Shneour
Lyricist’s Yiddish Name: זלמן שניאור
Time Period:20th century

This Song is Part of a Collection

Mir Trogn Song Book Cover with Illustrations

Mir Trogn A Gezang: Favorite Yiddish Songs

First published in 1972, Mir Trogn A Gezang: Favorite Yiddish Songs was reprinted six more times (in 1977, 1982, 1985, 1987, 1988, 2000) due to popular demand. The songs in this anthology represent a sampling of beloved folk and well-known Yiddish songs, many of which are scattered in various song collections; some appear in very rare and inaccessible collections; and some were never before published. Folk songs comprise about a third of this volume and were selected mainly on the basis of popularity and sometimes for their historic significance. Needless to say, they are only representative of the vast, rich treasure of Yiddish folk material. The selection was made not only on the basis of personal preference, but in the knowledge they are favorites of many who sing these songs. Most of the songs represent the repertoire that was sung at Yiddish summer camps, May 1st demonstrations and at social gatherings. Many songs were introduced to American Jewry by Jewish immigrants who came to the United States after World War II, for whom these songs had been favorites in Poland and other East European communities destroyed by the Nazis.

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