July 31, 2010

Spirit Rising

Annie's Song
By John Denver
You fill up my senses
like a night in the forest
like the mountains in springtime,
like a walk in the rain
like a storm in the desert,
like a sleepy blue ocean
you fill up my senses,
come fill me again.

Come let me love you,
let me give my life to you
let me drown in your laughter,
let me die in your arms
let me lay down beside you,
let me always be with you
come let me love you,
come love me again.

This ballad has been around for a long time. It has outlived its singer-songwriter, John Denver; it has been around for most of my lifetime. It keeps on playing and we keep on listening. Why? The song most often evokes romantic love in its renditions. But is this ballad so romantic after all? The story it suggests lives on--even after the flowers and kind words are gone, divorced or died.

There is something so very appealing and enduring to it. One senses more of the eternal: eternal wishes, hopes and dreams. There are comparisons to mountains, springtime, deserts and sleepy oceans in its lyric. All these features of the natural world have been around for millions of years, more than any single lifetime. "You fill up my senses," sings Denver. Who? What?

There must be something more here. The singer writes of 'giving up my life to you;' it sounds surprisingly to my ear, at least, to resemble the story of the Bible. Followers are asked to give up what they own, come follow me. 'Come, love me again,' and again. And yes, that is very romantic, but moreover it is loving.

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