Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Poetry Wednesday: Stand By Me

Visit Jacqui for this week's Poetry Wednesday.

Last weekend my little film group selected the movie "The Soloist" for our monthly get-together. I am a bit out of touch and didn't have prior knowledge of the story - a true story - of an accomplished, Julliard-trained cellist; a man with great talent but also having a broken mind. It's a heart-wrenching story of the life of a schizophrenic, homeless street musician.

Here in Salt Lake, there is a well-known figure who sits outside theaters and concert halls playing his cello for donations, similarly afflicted as the person in the movie. Over the years I've seen him become thinner, scruffier, sadder. I once saw him without his cello, just talking to a fence.

I'm tempted, but for now I'll skip the political pontificating about how it happens that we have allowed these people to fall through the cracks. Instead for our poetry Wednesday, I'll offer, not strictly a poem, but song lyrics, and an inspiring performance on video.

Just by coincidence, someone very dear to me sent me a YouTube video this week of a well-known song performed by mostly street musicians from around the world. Scroll down for the video. (Yes, I did use this on another blog this week, but if you saw this already, well enjoy it again, it's well worth watching twice.)

Stand By Me
Lyrics by Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller, Ben E. King

When the night has come
And the land is dark
And the moon is the only light we see
No I won't be afraid
No I won't be afraid
Just as long as you stand, stand by me

And darling, darling stand by me
Oh, stand by me
Stand by me, stand by me

If the sky that we look upon
Should tumble and fall
And the mountain should crumble to the sea
I won't cry, I won't cry
No I won't shed a tear
Just as long as you stand, stand by me

And darling, darling stand by me
Oh, stand by me
Stand by me, stand by me, stand by me

Whenever you're in trouble won't you stand by me
Oh, stand by me
Oh, stand by me, stand by me, stand by me

Darling, darling stand by me
Stand by me
Oh stand by me, stand by me, stand by me

Playing For Change | Song Around The World "Stand By Me" from Concord Music Group on Vimeo.


Jacqui Binford-Bell said...

Song lyrics are poetry. Well, some aren't. This one is. The lyrics of Paul Simon certainly too.

And not to be too political but I do think the previous administration let a lot of people and things fall through the cracks.

Good post. Enjoyed the Youtube.

bekkieann said...

Yes, Paul Simon is a poet and a musician. You gotta love "Still Crazy After All These Years".

Michael said...

I really enjoyed this post. I have a strong picture in my mind now of the man with the cello. Your tulips look just grand in such a natural surrounding.

bekkieann said...

Thanks for visiting, Michael. That natural surrounding is my attempt at what we here in the high mountain desert call 'xeriscaping' or water-wise gardening. I have reduced my lawn to just a small area in front of the house and the rest of the yard I've worked at planting drought-tolerant plants with large areas of mulch and targeted watering. In the picture all of my perennials are just starting to come up and over the summer this scene will change many times. I'll post pictures from time to time to show the evolution.

I'll be back over to visit at your blog. I've got it on my RSS feed so I won't miss any new posts.