It is said that both the text and the moving melody of this supplication were composed by the renowned righteous man Reb Arye Leib, one of the followers of the Baal Shem Tov. He was known as the Shpoler Zeide having lived in the city of Shpole in the Ukraine. He is remembered as a great exponent of Ahavat Yisroel, the his love for fellow Jews. This melody was chanted by the Shpoler Zaide before the midnight prayer bewailing the destruction of the Temple, "Tikun Chatzot."

The text is divided into four stanzas. Each verse is sung in Hebrew, Yiddish and Russian (a mixture of White Russian and Ukrainian). The first section of the melody is sung with the text and the musical refrain, without words, follows. Only the first verse is sung on this record in three languages. The same melody may be used for each succeeding verse.

This soulful melody is a dialogue between the Almighty Father and His children, the people of Israel. The Father looks for His children in the Diaspora, Galut, and implores them to return home to the Holy Land. "Where have you been that you have forsaken Me?" He inquires of His children, "Dear children, please return home, I feel forlorn without you." The children's answer is "But, Father, how can we return when there is a guard blocking the door?"