Friday, December 24, 2010


For a number of years, my friend Warren Hanson and I have collaborated on an annual Christmas song. I write the lyrics and he composes the music. (My part of this year's song is half finished.) This is the song written in 2001, just a few months after 9/11. I offer it as a blog Christmas card. Alas, it is without Warren's beautiful melody.

(The first two verses are a dialog between Joseph and Mary; the third verse between a shepherd boy and his father; the fourth -- as in many carols -- is a kind of prayer. )

Mary, the night is dark, you’re getting weary;
I thought we’d find Bethlehem long before now.
I know a little inn – the keeper’s a friend of mine –
he’ll find a bed for you somewhere, somehow.
Mary, of course I will stay with you always,
though your “angel’s message” I don’t understand.
Now, while we’re looking for light in the darkness,
I’ll hold the candle and you hold my hand.

Joseph, the message is our little baby,
and you are the angel that guides us tonight,
over this rocky road, under this starry sky –
look at that one that is shining so bright!
Joseph, what keeps you so true to your promise,
when this isn’t anything like you had planned?
Could it be love? Do you feel love around us?
You hold the candle and I’ll hold your hand.

Father, I’m frightened; the whole sky was glowing!
The nighttime was brighter than sunshine at noon.
The sound of a thousand wings – something was happening!
Now it’s so dark – just that star and the moon.
Father, you fell to your knees in that brightness.
Yes, till the angel’s song told me to stand!
Now let us go find that Bethlehem stable;
I’ll hold the candle and you hold my hand.

Dear baby Jesus, we follow the shepherds –
follow a star to the place where you sleep.
Mary and Joseph rest; you sleep in gentleness –
a little light shining in shadows so deep.
Jesus, you’ve been the light from the beginning –
And, on that day when night covered the land,
You are the word that we heard in the darkness:
“I’ll hold the candle and you hold my hand.”


Last year's Christmas song post is here.

Warren has made a CD, "Christmas Always," of his arrangements of a number of our songs, as well as some of his own. You can order it from Warren's site, here.

(c) Richard Jorgensen

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