Song Lyric Sunday – 6 December 2020 – The Snake

Jim Adams’ Song Lyric Sunday gives us the chance to share familiar, and sometimes not so familiar, songs. Jim has given us Alligator/ Crocodile/ Lizard/ Snake/ Turtle this week to be included in the title or lyrics.

If you fancy sharing one of your favourite songs you can find out how to participate, and also listen to all the great entries, here.

This week I am featuring The Snake, a song written and first recorded by civil-rights activist Oscar Brown in 1963, which became a hit single by American singer Al Wilson in 1968.

Also a great cover by Sarah Collins

and even The World’s Best Dancer

The song gained renewed attention during the campaign for the Presidential election in 2016. Donald Trump read its lyrics at several campaign rallies to illustrate his position on illegal immigration, claiming that the decision to allow people claiming refugee status to enter the United States would “come back to bite us”, as happened to the woman who took in the snake in the song. Songwriter Oscar Brown had seven children. His work has been characterized as “a celebration of black culture and a repudiation of racism”, and suggestions have been made that the snake in the song refers to a white person.  Two of his seven children asked Trump to stop using their late father’s song, telling the media: “He’s perversely using ‘The Snake’ to demonize immigrants” and that Brown “never had anything against immigrants.” Despite a cease and desist letter, President Trump has continued reciting the lyrics at rallies as recently as November 2020.

However, it has also been used to show his true colours:

The Snake

Al Wilson

On her way to work one morning
Down the path along side the lake
A tender hearted woman saw a poor half frozen snake
His pretty colored skin had been all frosted with the dew
“Poor thing, ” she cried, “I’ll take you in and I’ll take care of you”
“Take me in tender woman
Take me in, for heaven’s sake
Take me in, tender woman, ” sighed the snake

She wrapped him up all cozy in a comforter of silk
And laid him by her fireside with some honey and some milk
She hurried home from work that night and soon as she arrived
She found that pretty snake she’d taken to had been revived
“Take me in, tender woman
Take me in, for heaven’s sake
Take me in, tender woman, ” sighed the snake

She clutched him to her bosom, “You’re so beautiful, ” she cried
“But if I hadn’t brought you in by now you might have died”
She stroked his pretty skin again and kissed and held him tight
Instead of saying thanks, the snake gave her a vicious bite
“Take me in, tender woman
Take me in, for heaven’s sake
Take me in, tender woman, ” sighed the snake
“I saved you, ” cried the woman
“And you’ve bitten me, but why?
You know your bite is poisonous and now I’m going to die”
“Oh shut up, silly woman, ” said the reptile with a grin
“You knew damn well I was a snake before you took me in
“Take me in, tender woman
Take me in, for heaven’s sake
Take me in, tender woman, ” sighed the snake

Source: LyricFind

Songwriters: Oscar Brown Jr.The Snake lyrics © Carlin America Inc

Song Lyric Sunday – 6 September 2020 – Yanamamo

Jim Adams’ Song Lyric Sunday gives us the chance to share familiar, and sometimes not so familiar, songs. Jim has given us Musical/Opera this week rather than a choice of words to be included in the title or lyrics.

If you fancy sharing one of your favourite songs you can find out how to participate, and also listen to all the great entries, here.

I’m opting for a not so familiar song this week, from a musical that is normally performed by schoolchildren. I was lucky enough to attend a performance, probably 25 years ago now. It was very moving. The children had obviously spent a huge amount of time in learning, rehearsing, and performing the 90 minute work. Afterwards I bought a cassette tape (remember those) of the performance and played it often in the car whilst travelling to and from work.

Peter Anthony Rose MBE (music) and Anne Conlon MBE (words) are British writers best known for their environmental musicals for children. They were both teachers in Lancashire, England, for the majority of their creative achievements and most of their works have been written specially for St Augustine’s RC High School, Billington. At the time Peter Rose was their head of music. They wrote with a view to expanding the children’s knowledge of the world and the environment, perhaps hoping that their seeds would fall on fertile minds and help to make the world a better place.

In 1988 the US-based World Wildlife Fund (WWF) funded the musical Yanomamo, by Rose and Conlon, to convey what is happening to the people and their natural environment in the Amazon rainforest. It tells of Yanomami tribesmen/ tribeswomen living in the Amazon and has been performed by many drama groups around the world. Sadly, lessons were not learned and the Yanomami continue to endure massacres, disease, and a loss of more and more of their environment. What appeared to be a positive awakening of their plight was very short lived. The rest of the world calls it progress!

Yanomamo is a 90-minute work for chorus, soloists, narrator and stage band, and the original production, performed by the choir and musicians of St Augustine’s RC High School, was narrated by Sir David Attenborough and premiered at the Royal Institute, London, before appearing at the Edinburgh Festival. They later performed Yanomamo in America, narrated by Sting, which production was recorded for television and later broadcast (on Easter Sunday, 1989) on Channel 4 under the title of Song of the Forest. The TV version was commercially released by WWF. Since its publication the musical has seen performances by thousands of children throughout the world.

The lyrics are on the video which, unfortunately, is not very good quality. I hope you enjoy “Song of the Forest”

How my home movie became a MAGA hit — Living in the future present

For a glimpse of mid 1970’s America, especially California, you will find this a fascinating read. There is the benefit of seeing  a good old fashioned “home movie”, although a very highly sophisticated one, if you follow the link:

The spirit of 77 in Los Angeles

In the mid 1970s, I worked as an exchange teacher in a California high school. It was an exciting and formative year for me and my family. 1976 was the bicentenary of American independence, and signs and flags everywhere announced “Spirit of ’76”. There was a palpable feeling of optimism. The Vietnam war was over, […]

via How my home movie became a MAGA hit — Living in the future present

Lundi limerick #62

Limericks are normally light hearted, mildly humorous, often tongue in cheek, and slightly risqué. This one is not any of those. For whatever reason, this came to mind and it makes me rather sad. I shall not analyse, or explain, any more than that!

 

Jenny from Jarrow was sad

she’d argued with Mum and with Dad

She’d never felt right

and had told them in fright

that she desperately felt like a lad

I talk to the trees………..

This popped up in my Facebook “memories” today. I thought it may be of interest, even though it is rather a long read.

Peter's pondering

Not only do I talk to the trees, I talk to all manner of things.

Each morning I go for a walk.

I have various routes, but all take in fields, woodland, the River Erewash, the Erewash canal, bridges, a main road, and suburban streets.

Some days I hardly see a living soul, others I see far too many!

My normal route takes me down my road, which has only some 9 houses. At the bottom of the road I have my first conversation, with a brazen hussy who rolls on the ground and will not let me pass before she is satisfied. Somewhere close by her brother will be watching. He is more timid and undemanding. Their Mummy lives at the end house and thinks they are both boys!

I explain that I have to get on, and continue on my way. She follows, then runs ahead. It is…

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Privilege and Fractures

Carol at Wanderings of an Elusive Mind has done a great job of explaining the problems facing The United States of America…and it starts with the haves, afraid they will lose something, vs. the have nots, who are struggling with the long-held belief that upward mobility is possible. This applies equally to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Interesting to note that UNITED appears in both country titles, but fails to appear in everyday living!
Thanks to Margo at https://margosviews.wordpress.com for her initial re blog of this post.

Wanderings of an Elusive Mind

Privilege is defined as “a special right, advantage, or immunity granted or available only to a particular person or group”.

As a white-skinned man, you have always been granted the privilege to “sit at the counter”, drink from a water fountain, live in the better neighborhoods, be given credit for some degree of intelligence, admitted to the school of your choice, enter in the business of your choice, ride in the front of the bus, vote for the candidate of your choice. Women have had to fight hard for these privileges. People of color have had to fight harder for these privileges.

Even today, when equality is purportedly granted to all, some experience much more privilege than others.

As a wealthy white man, you have always had more privileges than those of a lower “class” or income group. As a wealthy man, you have always had the privilege of being…

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On the will of the people; or, the right to change one’s mind — Living in the future present

For anyone wondering what all this fuss is about BREXIT, John, over at Living in the future present, has done an excellent job of describing the utter chaos we are now living in, in the UK.

A banner above a crowd of two million at the People’s Vote demonstration in Westminster on Saturday 23 March 2019 This post is written mainly for friends abroad who ask what is happening to the UK, but the idea of “the will of the people” affects us all. Theresa May, Prime Minister (for the moment) […]

via On the will of the people; or, the right to change one’s mind — Living in the future present

#WeRemember

There are still lessons to be learned, as hatred and bigotry are still widespread in all countries. It was reported today that 1 in 10 in the UK do not believe the Holocaust happened. Thank you to Kelly for the reminder.

Kelly With A Why

Today is International Holocaust Remembrance Day, and marks the 74th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. I thought it was a fitting time to recount my visit to the Sydney Jewish Museum back in November.

The museum was established in 1992 by the generation of Holocaust Survivors who settled in Australia. This very special place continues to give a voice to the victims of the Holocaust, so their individual and collective stories can spark dialogues and inspire change. As well as preserving and documenting this important historical period, the museum also beautifully illustrates the richness of Jewish life in Australian society. The ground floor displays teach many aspects of Jewish faith and traditions. This Gentile found it fascinating.

The Holocaust exhibition stretches across three levels of the building, and details the persecution and murder of European Jewry from 1933-1945. The events of Hitler’s WWII are described in chronological order…

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