Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Hello, Jonah

As I mentioned earlier, I plan to perform a song with each of the lectures that I give at the upcoming IHS Liberty & Society Seminar. You might call it a silly indulgence, but I peg it as simply good, clean fun. Done right, songs constitute good pedagogy, too. I've tried to write mine so that they reinforce the themes of my lectures.

I've already blogged about two of the songs that I plan to perform, Monster, and The Interstate Commerce Blues. I wrote a third song, Hello, Jonah, to accompany my last lecture, Living a Life of Liberty. Both the song and the lecture offer a particularly apt message for the 4th of July: Friends of liberty find it difficult, but rewarding, to both live in this imperfect world and live up to their principles.

Hello, Jonah

Verse 1:
Well, hello, Jonah! And—whaddya' know?—
I see Geppetto and Pinnochio!
It's gettin' crowded, from head to tail.
Guess we're all livin' in the belly of the whale.

At least it's cozy, and nice and warm,
And it gives us shelter from the ragin' storm,
N' though I smell trouble, I can say at least,
I'm not deeper in the belly of the beast.

Refrain 1:
We stumble through this world of darkness, pain, and doubt.
We suffer in this prison, we struggle to get out.
With strivin', strength, and study, we might finally find a way.
To flee the night and finally see the day.

Verse 2:
Hey, now, Geppetto, what's that you've got?
As ideas go—hah!—I'd say that's hot.
Count me in! I like your plan,
To burn the belly of leviathan.

Thank you, Jonah, I liked your prayer.
But will you now please get over here.
You've got to labor, and not just wish,
To get out of the belly of the fish.

Refrain 2 (same as refrain 1 but for last line):
. . .
To join the fight to win the light of day.

Verse 3:
Hurray, brothers! We're finally out!
Hallelujah sisters! Raise a joyful shout!
From hell below we've now been hurled.
But we're still livin' in the belly of the world.

Refrain 3 (same as refrain 1 but for last line):

. . .
To seize the light and make a brighter day.


David Friedman said...

Have you considered doing a musical version of Kipling's MacDonough's song? One of the best bits of anarchist poetry I know.

Tom W. Bell said...

David: Not until now! I'll look it up and see any tune springs to mind. Thanks for the tip.