Exquisite Anguish

Dear reader,
Some of you have had this experience … those very special times when a certain song reaches so deep inside you that you burst into tears. If the beneficent universe hasn’t yet blessed you in this way I encourage you to seek for it.
I woke to a whole pile of stressors this morning; was really struggling to get my moorings, so I did what I don’t always remember to do in such times, I turned to music. 
Here’s what came up when I clicked on YouTube:
First time through I just listened. Then I knew I had to put my earphones on and listen again. This time I literally burst into tears with the first line:
“All we are, we have found in song”
I let it flow, sobbing out loud. Then I knew I wanted to see the faces of these beautiful young singers so I wiped my eyes and started to focus when the girls came in. 
I was fine then, until I heard the word “cry”. The dam gates opened then and I poured my anguish out. 
[One of the many things I learned in my years as a chaplain was that laughing, crying, and singing are equally therapeutic. They have in common, deep breathing.]


I needed to hear clearly the words they were singing so I downloaded the lyrics. Here are the words expressing my  wonderful tears, all the way from the first “cry” to the end. 

“ … hands that shape our calling voice

on the edge of answers

you’ve heard our cry, you’ve known our cry: music’s fierce compassion flows from you.

The night is restless with the sounds we hear, is broken, shaken by the cries of pain:

for this is music’s inner voice,

saying, yes, we hear you,

all you who cry aloud,

and we will fly, answering you: so our lives sing, sing,

wild we will fly,

wild in spirit we will fly.

Like a feather falling from the wing, fragile as a human voice,

afraid, uncertain,

alive to love, we sing as love, afraid, uncertain,

yet our flight begins as song.”

Speaking of the end; some of you know how much I’m nourished by the two bass parts on the last word, “song,” although only one or two of them were allowed to stay on the D while the rest floated up the scale. 

Exquisite indeed. 



  1. Richard A Manhire says

    Yes, I concur with John’s deep feelings that music touches our souls, the deepest parts of our soul, where tears are maybe the best, and only, logical expression for our emotions. Thank you John for sharing this beautiful song with all of us

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