The Ballad of the Five Women

The two midwives wouldn’t listen to Pharaoh
Wouldn’t drown the Hebrew infants, oh, no no!
It was Shifrah, it was Puah,
Who saved each baby Jew, ah,
Those two midwives wouldn’t listen to Pharaoh.

Moses’ mother hid him from the evil ones,
For he was her flesh and blood, he was her son.
Yocheved made an ark,
Put her baby in the dark,
Moses’ mother hid him from the evil ones.

Moses’ sister took him to the river Nile,
And she watched as Pharaoh’s daughter came in style.
Miriam – she brought her mother,
To nurse her baby brother,
Moses’ sister took him to the river Nile.

And the princess brought him up to be a man,
Till away from Egypt Moses ran and ran.
Batya, Batya – she was great,
Joined the Hebrews in their fate,
Yes, this princess brought him up to be a man.

Moses’ wife gave him the courage to go back.
If you stay in Midian, you’ll wind up a hack!
Oh Tsipora, oh Tsipora!
Without her we’d have no Torah,
Moses’ wife gave him the courage to go back.

In the ark, Her light upon him, it did shine.
Moses sought her presence, for her he did pine.
Oh Shekhinah, soul of Torah,
Now we seek you more and more, ah,
In the ark Your light upon him, it did shine!

From the Kehilla Community Synagogue Passover Haggadah, Berkeley, California, 1986. Used with permission of the author.

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