[my cousin stephanie was kind enough to create a reflection of a certain song and its special memory. it seemed rather fitting to share her contribution for thanksgiving, as my family including this sweet lil boy below, mean the world to me. every year comes another reminder of how lucky we are to have one another and for that, for all of you, im absolutely grateful. happy thanksgiving!]
The first time I heard this song I was 19 or 20 years old, staying in Francestown, New Hampshire at my then boyfriend’s parent’s home. It was a small house party, and the people there were a laid-back, pot-smoking, micro-beer drinking kind of crowd. I remember our host taking out his guitar and someone brought out the bongo drums, and we all just danced around wildly. The music of Johnny Clegg played and he was singing to his young son, “When I hold your small body close to mine, I feel weak and strong at the same time, so few years to give you wings to fly, show you the stars to guide your ship by!” I remember thinking; one day, if I have a child, I would like to sing this song to him or her, and dance wildly around the room together…
Sixteen years later, I am a single mom of a beautiful young boy. Shortly after I brought him home from the hospital, I started playing this song for him, and he loves it! We dance together; I sing at the top of my lungs, he runs in circles until he’s so dizzy he falls to the floor. For me, this song has many special meanings. It brings me back to that time in my life when everything was possible, and not knowing what the future would hold. The song captures the spirit of a parent who understands that the world has beauty and ugliness, and that the world created for a child is the parent’s world to give, and at some point the parent has to let go. (But not yet!) As a parent, I want the best for my son. To do that I need to give him the best that I can, and pray that life will be kind.
“Every day you wake up,
I hope it’s under the blue sky.”
words by stephanie barnes
photography by melissa barnes