Dov Velvel: It's Beowulf, in English & Yiddish

On a lark, a little bit of fun with fiction. Thanks to @JustSayXtian on Twitter for the prompt.

If you enjoy this little story, please give some tzedakah. I would really appreciate it if you'd give generously to this GoFundMe, to help care for the family of a dear friend who could use the help.

Otherwise, any other charity is fine. 


Thanks! Enjoy!


Nu, in the old country we heard

how in the goldene medina 

they had a king who was mamash a mensch.


Scef's boy, Scyld, no, not the doctor, the other one,

He was davka a real shtarker. Every day he went out

and showed the nishtgoodniks what's for.

Such nachas they had from him!

Later, Scyld had a boychik,

A little vilde chaya, 

Ribbono shel Olam sent him,

because He knew the tzuris they had.


They called him Beow

(But his Jewish name was Mendele)

And when he grew up he was a baal tzedaka

and everybody spent Shabbos by him.

Scyld lived to a hundred and zwanzig,

And then he passed, and the Men's Club sat shiva.

They did a meal like you wouldn't believe

Corned beef, knishes, the whole shmear.


Then Mendele took over the family business.

He was a mensch. His son Halfdane

Merited three boys and a girl.


The middle boy, Hrothgar

Had a good name

He did very well for himself

And decided to build a shul

He raised funds and built it

And called it after his friend Hirsch Tzvi

And it was packed all the time

Not just on the High Holy Days


But this too shall pass,

And did they have tzuris? 

Oy, like a bad machatunim,

You shouldn't know from it.

That mamzer, that dybbuk

Called Grendel-

Ptui ptui ptui-

Decided to stir the pot.

He hated their davening

And their simchas.


This cossack, this Grendel-

He should grow like an onion-

Had such a bad yichus

That nobody would go near him.


At night he came to the shul,

After Hrothgar had a big tisch,

And it has to be said, everybody

Was a little schluffy because

They all got shiker.


And Grendel - his name should be erased - 

He came in and wrecked up the place

And snatched up 30 men, carrying them away 

Like a gonif.

In the morning everybody saw what happened,

And Hrothgar cried "Gevalt!"

This he needed like a lokh in kop.


Twelve years this went on,

Until the Hrisch Tzvi shul

Was empty.

It became the shul

That nobody goes to.


One day, though, b'ezrat Hashem,

Somebody came to help.

Built like a golem, strong like an ox,

But a Yiddishe kop too. 


He sailed over with a minyan

Plus a few extra men just in case.

The gabbai stopped them at the door,

And asked them: "Nu?"


The man said, "We are talmidim of R' Hygelac,

And maybe you heard of my father, Ecgtheow?"

The gabbai said he knew them, 

Had seen them at a wedding once. 

He opened the shul for them, 

Then wished them Aleichem Sholom.


They found Hrothgar there, 

With a couple of guys from the Kiddush Club.

Such a shanda, that a mensch like this 

Should look like such a shlimazel.


Hrothgar said he remembered this man-

Dov Velvel, he was called - from when 

Ecgtheow married Hrethel's daughter.

Dov Velvel said he came

To give Grendel such a zetz

And then they kibbitzed

And had coffee and cake.


That night, Dov Velvel and his minyan

Laid down for schluff. 

They thought this would be the end for them.

But Dov Velvel was a real frum Yid,

And trusted in Ribbono shel Olam

To take care of him.


Then Grendel - 

His mother should only know sorrow of him! - 

Stole in like a fox among the chickens

And grabbed up a man

And gobbled him up

Like the first man to the chulent pot at the kiddush.


Then Dov Velvel jumped up from the bed

Where he had been pretending to sleep,

And he grabbed on to Grendel

With all the strength he had.


The two of them banged around the shul,

They knocked over the chairs, 

They wrecked the shtenders,

But Dov Velvel held on tight,

Stubborn, an akshen. 


Then, with a wail like a shofar,

Grendel - all of our problems

Should go on his head - 

Cried out, defeated, but

Dov Velvel hung on still, 

To teach him a lesson, 

And he tore off Grendel's arm. 


Grendel - may the leeches 

Drink him dry - 

Turned tail and ran back to the swamps

To die there, and to be judged by the One above.

And Dov Velvel was made President of the shul.

And to celebrate, they had such an oneg, 

That people still talk about it to this day.


But this, too, shall pass...




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Dov Velvel: It's Beowulf, in English & Yiddish

On a lark, a little bit of fun with fiction. Thanks to @JustSayXtian on Twitter for the prompt. If you enjoy this little story, please give ...