With the very best Christmastide and indeed New Year’s wishes to all my friends and readers, allow me offer such peace as one can in such a troubled and dangerous world.
Our thoughts are with our friends and families dear to us, whether living near or far, whether on this Earth or gone to a Higher Reward.
Fittingly, and at this wintry, bleak time of the year, when those of us of a certain age reflect upon the gifts of family and heritage that we have received, and which it is our duty to impart to the next generations, nothing can be a closer connection with the ethereal, nothing can evoke the spirit of the Christ child more than Tchaikovsky’s Hymn to the Cherubim’s Song No. 3 (Херувимская песнь), the very reason we celebrate Christmas:
If this does not play, my apologies, please click here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3xKTE64mDk&feature=relmfu
My extra-special loving thoughts are for my own wee family and indeed for yours, as well, but most particularly for the men- and women-in-arms deployed far away on the most foreign of soils.
In the Bleak Midwinter is a Christmas carol based upon a poem by the English poet Christina Rosetti written sometime before 1872.
Very sadly, Ms. Rosetti (1830-1894) never lived to hear her moving words set to music by the English composer, Gustav Holst (1874-1934).
The a capella version strips all of life’s frills away except for the gently and deeply moving, truly magnificent power of the music.
I do hope we can ‘chat’ again sometime after the New Year.
If this does not play, my apologies. Please click here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kjRXIiZ8bs0&feature=related
In the bleak midwinter
In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind made moan,
earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone;
snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
in the bleak midwinter, long ago.
Our God, heaven cannot hold him, nor earth sustain;
heaven and earth shall flee away when he comes to reign.
In the bleak midwinter a stable place sufficed
the Lord God Almighty, Jesus Christ.
Angels and archangels may have gathered there,
cherubim and seraphim thronged the air;
but only his mother, in her maiden bliss,
worshiped the beloved with a kiss.
What can I give him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
if I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
yet what I can I give him: give my heart.
San Francisco-based Chanticleer, Chanticleer website Twitter: @ChanticleerSF
Text: Christina G. Rossetti,
Music: Gustav Holst
The Holst Birthplace Museum in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England is well worth the trip. Holst Birthplace Museum Twitter: @HolstMuseum