Friday, December 21, 2012

Songs in the Wake of Silence

The governor of Connecticut has called for a moment of silence a week after the tragic shooting in Newtown. Silence can be deeply poignant and can focus our thoughts. But what we do in the moments after the silence can be quite awkward and even seem to undercut the sacredness of the silence. There are a number of songs, however, that can punctuate the silence with a kind of federal expression of lament. The following songs have served that purpose for me at different times in my life, so I offer them here for you as you grieve and as you take up the challenge of life after grief.

But if you could, do you think you would
trade in all the pain and suffering?
Ah! But then you'd miss the beauty
of the light upon this earth
and the sweetness of the leaving

Calling all angels . . .
Walk me through this world.
Don't leave me alone . . .
And finally, this benediction from the Finn Brothers.

Go in peace. God help us all.

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