Thursday, November 18, 2010

Dearest Annabelle

Christmas music is in full force. On the radio, in department stores, and in my head. I have a confession to make.

I love Christmas music.

I know I may come across sometimes as a curmudgeon who hates all things beautiful - Top 40 Radio, Reality TV, Justin Bieber. And while I will rail against the commercialism of this season, I do love Christmas music.

So here is a Christmas song. No it's not your traditional fa la la la la, but it has some nods to a few of my favorite carols.

Football on Christmas, 1914
The impetus behind Dearest Annabelle came to me when I heard someone talking about the unofficial truce's that happened during World War I between the British and German soldiers on and around Christmas. The details vary by incident, but the gist is that the soldiers stopped fighting, exchanged gifts, sang carols, and in at least one case, played a pickup football game. This ability to step outside of themselves and find some human decency amidst such a horrific conflict is something from which we can all take some pointers.

Dearest Annabelle

Oh my dearest Annabelle
with frozen fingers fingers and a heart that's true
I write to you.

How I wish for sunny days
when warmth above would cast its rays on you
all dressed in blue

Its Christmas eve tonight on the battlefield
My rifle I will rest, my pen I'll wield

Though so many men have died 
in brutal bloodshed from the other side
I live for you

Strip away this uniform
and I will stand here unadorned, the man
that you once knew

This Christmas night is shining, bright and blue
Star of wonder and might bring me home to you

Through the crispness of this 
bitter night we hear O Tannenbaum and Yule
ring clear and true

Candle clad and arm in arm
they march across the death fields bearing truce
a peace filled fruit

Stille nacht, Heilige nacht
Alles schlaft, Einsam wacht

As I pen these words
with frostbit hand I hear the Christmas bells ring through
the dawn is new

Close my eyes I'm taken back
to Sunday morning snowflakes landing on 
turn into dew

Peace on earth, good will towards man
Father son and ghost have mercy on this land

Stille nacht

Heilige nacht

Tell your friends! Tweet it, Facebook it, spread it around like the flu virus!

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