Unitarian Hymnal Sing-along

In which Kathryn attempts to sing a different song everyday from the Unitarian Universalist hymnal, 'Singing the Living Tradition'. Earlier posts are based on songs from the Reader's Digest songbooks she found at yard sales as a child, including: 'Reader's Digest Treasury of Best Loved Songs', 'Reader's Digest Family Songbook', and 'Reader's Digest Family Songbook of Faith and Joy'. Bonus Folk song material from: 'Folk Song USA', by John and Alan Lomax.

15 January 2006

"Aura Lee"

Most people know this tune as 'Love Me Tender', but it was originally a Civil War song. Pretty cool. It also reminds me of Tolkien's saga of Beren and Luthien, something about the 'maid of golden hair'. It is a sweet tune, besides all that.

I wouldn't say that I'm empathic in the freaky 'I sense what you're feeling, oooooo!' kind of way, at least not most of the time. But there is something of empathy in my tendency to put myself in another's place, habitually. As a massage therapist this is very useful, I'm imagining what everything might feel like if I were the one on the table. But in the rest of my life as well, I regularly consider what it might be to walk in the other person's shoes, and it gives me some extra sympathy, and patience, as I go about my day.

When I was a kid, in kindergarten, and the bigger kids were mean to me, I decided then and there (one of those light-bulb memorable moments) that when *I* got big, I would be nice to the little kids. Even then I knew this was in stark contrast to the kids who were equally determined to have their own chance to be mean when they got older. These days driving a car seems to me to be one of the best ways to look at how the world works: do you let other people merge, or not? Do you speed up or slow down when pedestrians are waiting to cross? How much attention are you paying to what you're doing, your actions and their consequences? It renews my faith in the world when I have a driving experience full of strangers being nice to me. Recently I've been paying more attention to older drivers, grey-haired folks driving excruciatingly slow. And I'm thinking to myself: someday that will be me. As impatient as I am today, I will try to breathe and be nice to this little old lady, as crazy as she's making me, because I will be that woman someday.


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