4) Without Saying a Word – Bli Lomar Milah – בלי לומר מילה

4) Without Saying a Word – Bli Lomar Milah – בלי לומר מילה

A Shalom Chanoch classic is transformed from a soldier’s tale to a woman’s relationship with a non-communicative man.

This is a kind of ‘spot the difference’ unit. Before presenting this unit, we’d advise that you yourself run through your own answers to the questions suggested below.

Play and screen the original version, released in 1985.

Look through the lyrics afterwards, and share general responses to the song and to its content. Then tell them to listen carefully to the song’s remake, paying careful attention to the differences. Do not yet hand out the lyrics to the newer version – allow them to refer to the original lyrics.

Play and screen the Metropolin version, released 20 years later.

Some leading questions:

  • “And here he is, going back to war” – how does the weight and meaning of this line change from original to remake? [Our opinion: Metropolin’s version would seem to reduce the importance of this line so that ‘going back to war’ sounds metaphorical, not literal. And if this rings true, then what does this suggest about the place of war and army in current Israeli consciousness?]
  • The remake includes the voice of a woman. What affect does this have on your experience of the song?

Suggested activities:

  • Visual arts: Provide paints and crayons, and suggest the participants draw/paint the scene described by the song. Or provide Israeli magazines, newspapers, etc and give them scissors and glue to create a collage inspired by the song.
  • Creative writing: Have participants write the letter the man writes to the woman before going into battle. Or the letter she writes to him after he has left.
  • Drama: stage various scenes, such as: Their first meeting. What would have been said, were they to have spoken when he left?
  • Video: make a video clip of either of the two versions.

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