Jebena: Jerusalem, “The Flower of the Cities”

Recently Kiros Asfaha released a new song which we will feature next week. Kiros took the right path by contributing a different song, breaking the monotonous choice of Eritreans artists to focus on dance-music, guayla, at the expense of the contemplative and relaxing music. But that will be next week.

Today we will present to you a timeless revolutionary song about Jerusalem by the Lebanese icon Fairuz. “The Flower of the Cities”, an operetta, was released in Baalbek in 1967 and still remains an inspirational song to this day. Alongside Fairuz, credit for the song goes to the “Rahbanni brothers”, the famous Lebanese songwriters, authors, playwrights, and poets who are better known through the voice of Fairuz. Fairuz was married to Assi Alrahbani. The Rahbani  brothers were so loved that when one of them, Assi, died in the middle of the Lebanese civil war in 1986, Beirut’s “warring Muslim and Christian factions declared a cease-fire and opened the city’s checkpoints…in order to make way for his funeral procession.” His brother Mansour died in 2009. 

Out of the many translations of the original songs available on the Internet, we chose the translation by Prof Christopher Stone who reviews the song on

The original song by Fairuz  is linked here, but we chose to feature for you a newer version of the song; it’s a piano duet performed by Ahmed Al Zemeeli and Mohammed Bashar. Enjoy the song which was listened by 568,943 people so far.

“The Flower of the Cities”

For you, city of prayer, I pray
For you beautiful city, flower of cities
Jerusalem, Jerusalem, city of prayer, I pray

Our eyes travel to you every day
Moving about the hallways of the temples
Embracing the old churches
Wiping sadness from the mosques

Night of the Isra, path of he who ascended heavenward
Our eyes travel to you every day, and I pray
The child and his mother Mary in the cave, two crying faces.

For those made homeless
For the children without houses
For those who defended at the gates and were martyred
Peace itself was martyred in the nation of peace
and Justice fell at the gates
When the city of Jerusalem toppled
Love retreated and in the hearts of the world, war settled in
The child and his mother Mary in the cave, two crying faces.

The blinding anger is coming and I am full of faith
The blinding anger is coming and I will bypass the sadness
From every road it is coming, with the awesome steeds it is coming
As the omnipresent face of God, it is coming, coming, coming
The gate to our city will not close, for I am going to pray
I will knock on the gates, I will open the gates

And you Jordan River will wash my face with sacred water
And you Jordan River will erase the traces of the barbaric feet
The blinding anger is coming, awesome steeds it is coming
It will defeat the face of oppression
The house is ours, Jerusalem is ours
And with our hands, we are going to return the city to its splendor
With our hand’s peace is coming to Jerusalem.


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