Monday, May 28, 2012

God Bless America!

It was our privilege today to be a part of the school Memorial Day program, honoring the veterans who have fought for our country for more than 200 years. I want to say a big thank you to all who have served.


Mom, Tina, Tiggy, and I sang a trio arrangement of God bless America. That's not a typo; four of us sang a trio. We had to nearly disassemble the gymnasium after Mom's wireless mike wouldn't work. It made me wish I had some sort of poetry reading or something to pass the time  Now that I mention it, I could have, thanks to Mr. Unterseher, my high school English teacher.

With apologies to the poet, Ralph Waldo Emerson, for any smudging of my memory brought about by the preceding 26 years.

By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
Their flag to April's breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood,
And fired the shot heard round the world.

The foe long since in silence slept,
Alike, the conqueror silent sleeps,
And time the ruined bridge has swept,
Down the dark stream that seaward creeps.

Oh, spirit that made those heroes dare,
To die and leave their children free,
Bid time and nature gently spare,
This shaft we raise to them, and thee.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

It's a Long Way

Tipperary....Taco Bell.....not much difference. They're both a long, long way away. They both have food. But only one has had a WWI song written about it. That's not the one I mean.

This last weekend was State Music Festival. Sadly, Damon was disqualified by his grades. He wasn't the only one, but that was cold comfort to him as he stayed home and the rest of the group drove off into the sunset. (If we're going to be real technical, it wasn't actually sunset or sunrise, but kind of mid-morningish. But that just doesn't have the same poetic ring to it.)

Mrs. G drove one school vehicle, and I drove the other. No giant buses this time - a zippy little van for me, and a sleek SUV for her. She stopped very often for fuel, no doubt wanting to avoid a repeat of two years ago, when she accidentally ran out of gas on the way down. Thanks to the miracle of modern technology, nearly everyone in Westby knew what had happened before the van had coasted to a full stop beside the road.

Everyone performed wonderfully, and our town was justifiably proud of each of the students who played or sang. The highlight for me was Chad's performance (see Bittersweet if you haven't already met him), attended by his dad and long-term girlfriend. He was SO EXCITED to be able to go to the State Music Festival. Witnessing his joy during the whole trip was the kind of beautiful thing I usually only get to watch on strangers' inspiring Youtube videos. 

All too soon it was time to head home. Damon and Tiggy, time to start practicing for next year if you want to see the inside of a Taco Bell!

Until the next adventure,
Noni Beth