Lyrics, Nature and My Soul

A few days ago, a local non-profit sent out an announcement of an essay contest on Ecofeminism and the intertwining of nature and personal spirituality. I didn’t have time to write an essay, but I was inspired.

Suddenly, I was thinking about song lyrics, nature and the suffering of my soul before I turned 21.

Please reflect on your life and the lines in songs that comforted you with words of nature or spirit. Just single lines. Share them with the the rest of us.

You will be surprised at the feelings.

I focused on the lyrics of Oscar Hammerstein (South Pacific, Oklahoma, Sound of Music and others) as I grew up in the 50’s and 60’s and loved American Musicals. I just made a list of 8 lines he wrote, but I could have written down many more.

I also want to mention another song writer and a song he wrote that I first heard right around my 21st birthday. It filled my heart with extraordinary images of feminine wisdom, compassion and mystery and used nature brilliantly. It was “Suzanne” by Leonard Cohen. “and the sun pours down like honey.”

And then there will always be “Somewhere over the rainbow…”

Think about the lyrics that gave you the comfort to imagine yourself as a resilient, wonderful being of nature and spirit when you were young, alone and vulnerable. Please share them in the comments on the blog.

If you journal, you may want to write a paragraph or a page on why each of these single lines meant so much to you.

Here is what I wrote…

Oscar Hammerstein, Nature and My Soul… Two things nurtured and comforted my developing soul as a very lonely, traumatized adolescent, singing and nature. Hammerstein’s lyrics were so rich in natural metaphors that I could sing my heart out and feel totally embraced by the world of Nature. As an adult, I look at nature with such reverence, awe and intimacy. The intimacy is a direct result of Hammerstein’s lyrics.

“How do you hold a moonbeam in your hand?”
“Here am I your special island.”
“At the end of a storm is a golden sky and the sweet silver song of a lark.”
“…and watch a hawk making lazy circles in the sky.”
“Ol’ man river … you just keep rollin’ along”
“Blossom of snow may you bloom and grow, bloom and grow forever”
“We kiss in a shadow, we hide from the moon”
“And somewhere a bird who is bound to be heard is throwing her heart at the sky.”

I could make a list so long. Every line reveals the ability of nature to hug a young woman’s soul and tell her to live in beauty.
Now 50 years later the lyrics still enliven my soul and join my heart with all of nature.

All right…I just took 15 minutes out of my busy day to recollect a small part of my relationship to nature and song.

Back to work. Gotta keep the wave upon the sand!

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4 Responses to Lyrics, Nature and My Soul

  1. Sharyl Henry January 13, 2017 at 1:54 pm #

    John Denver – I was born in the summer of my 27th year, coming home to a place I’d never been before. John Denver – The flower that shattered the stone

  2. krissie January 13, 2017 at 7:49 pm #

    Lynn, this post really resonated, so felt compelled to comment, so many lines from songs have spoken to me over the years, so many from Leonard Cohen when I discovered him in my college days. Im going to think and journal this later, but I’ll leave you one-dont it make my browneeyes blue by crystal gale.

  3. tina January 13, 2017 at 11:10 pm #

    it is well, it is well o my soul

  4. Chocolate Waters January 14, 2017 at 6:52 pm #

    “Oh you can shake an apple off an apple tree, shake-a-shake sugar, but you’ll never shake me.” Elvis. An early declaration of my determination in life to “be someone.” Whatever that means. The back story is that I performed this song, impersonating Elvis, in a fifth grade talent show at Maytown Elementary in Lancaster, PA., circa 1960. I’d been an outcast, a relocated navy brat among my peers – but suddenly I was cool!