Hebrew
 
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Transliteration   
Yedid Nefesh R. Elazar Azkari
Tzfat 16th Century
Beloved of my soul, Merciful Father,
Draw your servant after your will
Your servant would run swift as a deer
To kneel before Your splendor
For Your love is sweeter to him
Than honey nectar and all pleasing savor
 
Exalted Glorious Beautiful Light of the World
My soul is love-sick for You
Please My God, please heal her
By showing her the beauty of Your radiance
Then she will be strengthened and healed
And be Your maidservant forever
 
Ancient One arouse Your mercy
Spare the son of Your beloved friend (Abraham)
For he has a long time longed
To behold the magnificence Your might
Please My God My Heart's Delight
Oh come quickly do nor forsake me
 
Reveal Yourself my dearest
And spread over me Your canopy of peace
Let the earth be illuminated with Your glory
Let us be delighted and rejoice in You
Make haste my beloved for the time has come
Show me Your favor as in the days of old

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The Piyut   
  
    This piyut, which holds a highly respected place among the traditions of the communities of Israel, was written by R. Elazar Azkari of the Tzfat Kabbalists in the 16th century. The poet himself defined this piyut as a supplication for union and the desire of love. In the Moroccan communities the piyut opens the songs of supplication (Shirat Habakashot), the Jews of Haleb (Syria) conclude the songs of supplication with the piyut, and in the Ashkenaz communities it is customary to sing this piyut before Kabbalat Shabbat. This version is taken from the author's hand written manuscript. Over the many years changes have befallen the text, one of the more evident errors is the exchange of the word Shifcha (meaning maidservant), with the word Simcha (meaning Joy).    


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