Jewish Life Kolot

Kolot: How Isaac met Rebekah, poetry by Norma Bursack

Norma BursackBloomfield poet Norma Bursack was inspired to write this poem after hearing the Torah portion read at Shabbat services at Beth Hillel Synagogue.  

How Isaac met Rebekah

Abraham, father of the Hebrew nation,
saw it to be his most sacred obligation
to acquire a wife for Isaac, his dear son
So now how Rebekah came to be the one:

Eliezer, his chief servant, he did command
to find Isaac a wife from his own homeland.
He prepared a bride price in silver and gold
more riches his kin ever dared they’d behold

Eliezer vowed to find for Isaac a good wife
the boy G-d spared from his father’s knife
a woman selected from Abraham’s kin
to be mother to Jacob and Esau, his twin

Rebekah, sister to Laban, daughter of Bethuel
Eliezer came upon at their village’s water well
He was taken by her generosity and gentle ways
found her most deserving of Abraham’s praise.

She ladled water for Eliezer and all his crew
and saw that his animals sated their thirst too
She bade them welcome to the home of her Dad
though they were strangers and he’d not be glad.

Eliezer was convinced Rebekah was the one
to become the bride of Isaac, Abraham’s son
He explained his mission to Laban, her brother
Laban responded you really must ask her mother

Her mother left it to Rebekah to decide
if she was ready to become Isaac’s bride
Eliezer told her Isaac was a kind gentle man
and marrying him would be a good plan

Rebekah agreed and with her nurse by her side
returned with Eliezer to become Isaac’s bride.
Isaac enthralled by her charm and beauty
was prepared to carry out his Biblical duty.

He felt for sure that she was heaven sent
and welcomed her to Mother Sarah’s tent
He had no inkling at that time of celebration
she would plot Esau’s birthright confiscation.

If Rebekah determined our forefathers’ descent,
she might have done so with our Maker’s consent
for Jacob fathered Joseph and his many brothers
with Leah, Rachel and a few other select mothers.

This is my humble rendition of the story in rhyme.
You can find it in the original at Bible study time.


KOLOT is a feature of the Jewish Ledger in which readers are invited to submit original work on a topic of their choosing.  Inquiries and/or submissions should be sent to

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