As a child growing up in Chelsea, one of my fondest memories was that of singing in the Glee Club at the Carter School under the direction of Melvin Toltz. Every year he would put together a holiday concert and teach us all wonderful songs that I play over and over in my head at this time of the year.
One of the songs, I believe, was called, “Dreaming of Hanukkah Candles.” Although we are not of the Jewish faith, my sister (age 77) and I (age 69) both sing this song yearly but can’t remember all of the lyrics. It was such a beautiful song, and we are not sure if possibly Mr. Toltz wrote it. I would love to know if it ever got published. Or if you would know where I might find a copy of the song? The words that we remember as follows:
“I am dreaming of Hanukkah Candles and they seem to be burning and bright.
They each have a story to tell me, as I watched their glowing light.
It is a story of hope and of yearning and tale told so long ago …
The candle held me in their spell and then I heard a voice calling the voice of Israel. It called us all to endeavor and make our loved ones supreme and our people will go on forever and that is my Hanukkah Candle Dream.”
These are jumbled words and probably incomplete. I don’t know if any of Mr. Toltz’s children are alive and have no way of finding them. I think that they would be pleased to know that this song and their father/grandfather lives on in the hearts and minds of two women for over 55 years!
Happy Hanukkah and Happy New Year!
Edie Constantine, Waltham