Singing Solo for Awhile

These are difficult trying days brooding down upon us, and the irony of today’s calendar date is not lost on me: March 15…aye…beware the Ides of March! Indeed, there is much ado about everything in the news and media reports. I am certain that tomorrow’s reports will contintue to enlarge our wonders and our fears. As one of my choir friends wrote to me in an email today: “When C.L. notified us of the cancellation of our chorale concert, I new that the world was coming to an end!”

Oh the agony of betrayal…beware the Ides of March! It does seem so evident, does it not…that we, the children of earth, have been betrayed by nature; stripped naked, to our core; our bodily immunities vanquished to ground zero in the face of the novel virus.  Fire and brimstone seems our lot, sinners all in the hands of any angry god.

And yet of late, while temperatures across the globe have been rising, I have noticed here and there…quickinings…in the spheres above…in the souls upon…in the waters’ risings below…our sickness has been long in coming. We cannot separate nor cut our ties to our native beginnings. We belong to the earth and she to us. And still, I get the sense, in the quickening, that this scourge is not come to destroy us, but rather to refine…to purify. This plague of the winds has not come to forever harm, but to awaken the sleeping children of every nation. If only we might rouse ourselves and realize…Love has been in our midst all along…now it descends heavily upon us…threatening to lay us low…but everything is not as it seems.

But there can always be a rebirth of love.
Wake to the choices you make as to how to live now.
Today, breathe.
Listen, behind the factory noises of your panic
The birds are singing again
The sky is clearing,
Spring is coming,
And we are always encompassed by Love.
Open the windows of your soul
And though you may not be able
to touch across the empty square,

– Fr. Richard Hendrick, OFM; March 13th 2020
(LOCKDOWN ~ an excert)

Six months ago I stumbled across a folk song well known by many, but novel to myself. It has quite a storied history and came into being around 1868. Upon hearing the poetry of the lyrics and its haunting melody, I was overcome with emotion to the point of tears. Six months ago I wanted to know why I had never heard this song in all of my 57 years. Today, these lyrics still move me greatly and I am grateful I found this music as it will surely be a balm to my soul in the days ahead. Perhaps you will find it likewise. How can I keep from singing? I most certainly cannot!

How Can I Keep From Singing
Lyrics sung by Audry Assad

My life flows on in endless song,
Above earth’s lamentation,
I hear the sweet, though far-off hymn,
That hails a new creation.
Through all the tumult and the strife,
I hear that music ringing.
It finds an echo in my soul.
How can I keep from singing?

What though my joys and comforts die?
I know my Savior liveth.
What though the darkness gather round?
Songs in the night he giveth.
No storm can shake my inmost calm
While to that refuge clinging.
Since Christ is Lord of heaven and earth,
How can I keep from singing?

I lift my eyes, the cloud grows thin,
I see the blue above it.
And day by day this pathway smooths,
Since first I learned to love it.
The peace of Christ makes fresh my heart
A fountain ever springing!
For all things are mine since I am his!
How can I keep from singing?

No storm can shake my inmost calm,
While to that refuge clinging.
Since Christ is Lord of heaven and earth,
How can I keep from singing?

2 thoughts on “Singing Solo for Awhile

  1. Ann Dalton

    I have loved this melody and the words when I first heard Enya record it a few years ago. I have often wondered why I had never heard it before.


  2. Keith Farnsworth

    Each time I listen to this song, something new and poignant rises to a conscious level and stirs the emotions. Thank you, Deb for sharing this.


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