STLT#398, To See the World

Programming Note: I’ve added a lovely piece from Mary Grigolia about her song I Know This Rose Will Open, from an email exchange we had, about the origins and meaning of that song. After you read this, go to that entry and check it out! — There are days in this practice when the little …

More

STLT#315, This Old World

Am I the only one who sees the first line of this song and thinks of “Man of Constant Sorrow” from O Brother, Where Are Thou? Really? It’s just me? Can’t be. Anyway…  this is another one I have never sung, and likely never would have chosen because it’s got a title “This Old World” and is …

More

STLT#306, Sing of Living, Sing of Dying

This was rather unexpected. I’ve never sung this one before – lyrics are by Thomas Mikelson, who wrote the magnificent lyrics to Wake Now My Senses and was my home congregation’s first interim minister. The tune is by another colleague, Fred Wooden, whose generosity means a few of his books (pictured) are now in my …

More

STLT#182, O, the Beauty in a Life

I was expecting this to be a difficult song to learn – enough times, that “Irregular” at the bottom of the page signals complex rhythms and intervals. Yet once I got into it, and I felt the 9/8 rhythm (which is really a glorious 3/4), the song suddenly felt familiar, in a way that makes …

More

STLT#102, We the Heirs of Many Ages

Welcome to another edition of Hymns I Have Never Sung and Plan To Use Now. We have now entered the next section of our hymnal; for those keeping track, we’ve finished the First Source songs and are now entering the Second Source, Words and Deeds of Prophetic People. (I hear you saying “people? Isn’t it …

More

STLT#62, When the Daffodils Arrive

This hymn has genuinely surprised me. First, let’s talk tune: it’s set to an Hasidic melody that holds in its phrases a secret and unspoken longing – certainly an intriguing choice for a hymn called “When the Daffodils Arrive.” I will also say that at first, I plunked it out fairly slowly – but then I …

More

STLT#37, God Who Fills the Universe

I don’t feel much like singing today. And in fact, I considered skipping today – hoping you all would understand that for those of us who regularly answer the call of love and justice, the American presidential election results have at least temporarily silenced the music. But here I am, and this spiritual practice today …

More

STLT#28, View the Starry Realm

Titles are deceiving… View the starry realm of heaven, shining distant empires sing. Skysong of celestial children turns each winter into spring, turns each winter into spring. Great you are, beyond conception, God of gods and God of stars. My soul soars with your perception, I escape from prison bars, I escape from prison bars. …

More