A Merry Little Christmas
“Have yourself a merry little Christmas Let your heart be light From now on Our troubles will be out of sight
Have yourself a merry little Christmas Make the Yule-tide gay From now on Our troubles will be miles away
The words to this song are familiar. One of my favorite Christmas tunes. Lilting, heavenly, a reminder of a time gone by.
Only recently have I really listened to the words. On a walk in my rural neighborhood, I heard the words as if for the first time, and differently, with a sadness that seems familiar right now. Here’s a link to Judy Garland’s version:
Here we are as in olden days
Happy golden days of yore
Faithful friends who are dear to us
Gather near to us once more
In this time of Covid, as we are now not able to gather and have our faithful friends who are dear to us near us, I wondered more about this song.
It was written during the depths of World War II, in 1943, for the movie Meet Me In St. Louis. The song first appeared in a scene in which a family is distraught by the father's plans to move to New York City for a job promotion, leaving behind their beloved home in St. Louis, Missouri, just before the long-anticipated 1904 World's Fair begins. In a scene set on Christmas Eve, Judy Garland's character, Esther, sings the song to cheer up her despondent five-year-old sister, Tootie, played by Margaret O'Brien.
The song soon became a beacon for soldiers far from home.
Through the years we all will be together
If the fates allow
Hang a shining star upon the highest bough
And have yourself a merry little Christmas now.
These words seem appropriate right now, in this Covid rampaged world. If the fates allow, we will be together for next year. I’d suggest we can all help make that possible by being responsible. And, keeping in mind, this is just one year in many we will all be together, if we help the fates allow us to be together next year.
And I hope you and yours, especially if you are grieving the loss of someone you love at this time of year, will find peace. We can all take action to perform acts of kindness for those around us we know are grieving.
And, I wish for you, dear readers, that you have a merry little Christmas, now.
So, hang a shining star upon the highest bough And have yourself a merry little Christmas now.”
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