I am constantly reminded that there are no accidents … even when it comes to having someone mention a musician they think you should check out. “She” told me about this fellow, and below you’ll find one of the first songs I heard him perform. It is haunting … a story of the effects of war; a story most of us have never faced, nor will we likely … at least in this turning of the wheel. But it draws you in to what it could be like. It draws you in to the reality of doing any and all to protect those you care for in the midst of unconscionable circumstance.
A note here: there are a number of videos I could have chosen from, but I chose this particular one because of a decision Richard made … to honor another musician who had a rendition different from how he originally created it … a simple act of humility.
Enter into the time of a refugee seeking to hold his own for the sake of those he loves dearly.
You stay here and I’ll go look for wood
Do not fear, I’ll be back soon enough
Do not let the fire die, neither let it burn too bright.
You stay here and I’ll go look for bread
And if can, some sugar for the kids
Dry your eyes, I’ll be alright
I know where they’ve laid the mines.
You stay here and I’ll go look for coats
There may still be some out on the road
We’ll wash them clean with melted snow
The kids don’t ever have to know.
You stay here and I’ll go look for guns
I think I know where they’ve hidden some
‘Cause if the Tiger comes one night
We won’t go without a fight
You stay here and I’ll go look for God
It won’t be hard, ’cause I know where He’s not
I will bring him back with me
Make Him listen, make Him see.
Although the entire song is captivating, I found one line to be particularly humbling … in preparations to leave in “search of God,” he said … it won’t be hard, ’cause I know where He’s not. This always draws me to a pause. Where do we believe God to be? And where is He not?
Richard Shindell is a great storyteller, gifted with the ability to bring a message in song, dressed fully in the emotion of the moment in which it lived. He has led me to many a path I may never have encountered without his assistance. Such an amazing gift to offer …
In fact, he led me to someone I will speak more about tomorrow … one Willy Porter, who I discovered during a search for this particular song. Prior to him playing, he offered “a thank you to Willy Porter for making this song famous.” Needless to say, I went looking for this “Willy” …
Enjoy dear friend … a song not merely repeated, but enlivened and released to flight …
I hold Richard Shindell in highest regard as an artist, but I do find Willy’s version of this song to be oh so sweet.
Be ever thankful of the blessings your life holds. As well, be ever mindful of those who struggle in ways unbeknownst to you …