“Never Say” became the unofficial song of Jewish partisans across occupied Europe. It was written in 1943 by Hersh Glik (1922-44) and set to music by two Soviet-Jewish composers, the brothers Dimitri and Daniel Pokras. Hersh Glik was killed after he tried to escape from a concentration camp in Estonia.

Never say there is only death for you.
Leaden skies may be concealing days of blue -
Because the hour we have hungered for is near;
Beneath our tread the earth shall tremble: We are here!

From land of palm-tree to the far-off land of snow,
We shall be coming with our torment and our woe.
And everywhere our blood has sunk into the earth,
Shall our bravery, our vigor blossom forth!

We’ll have the morning sun to set our day aglow,
And all our yesterdays shall vanish with the foe,
And if the time is long before the sun appears,
Then let this song go like a signal through the years.

This song was written with our blood and not with lead;
It’s not a song that birds sing overhead,
It was a people, among toppling barricades,
That sang this song of ours with pistols and grenades.

So never say that there is only death for you.
Leaden skies may be concealing days of blue -
Because the hour we have hungered for is near;
Beneath our tread the earth shall tremble: We are here!


Jewish Partisans from Vilna, July 1944