Saturday, December 09, 2006

Christmas Songs

Dick Smith, Felix Bernard

Over the ground lies a mantle of white,
A heaven of diamonds shines down through the night.
Two hearts are thrillin'
In spite of the chill in the weather.
Love knows no season, love knows no clime,
Romance can blossom any old time.
Here in the open
We're walkin' and hopin' together...

Sleigh bells ring, are you listenin'?
In the lane, snow is glistenin';
A beautiful sight, we're happy tonight
Walking in a winter wonderland.

Gone away is the bluebird,
Here to stay is a new bird.
He sings a love song as we go along,
Walking in a winter wonderland.

In the meadow we can build a snowman,
And pretend that he is Parson Brown.
He'll say, "Are you married?" We'll say, "No man,
But you can do the job when you're in town."

Later on, we'll conspire
As we dream by the fire,
To face unafraid the plans that we've made
Walking in a winter wonderland.

In the meadow we can build a snowman,
And pretend that he's a circus clown.
We'll have lots of fun with mister snowman
Until the other kiddies knock him down.

When it snows, ain't it thrillin'
Though your nose gets a chillin'?
We'll frolic and play, the Eskimo way,
Walking in a winter wonderland.
Hear it - Johnny Mercer and the Pied Pipers
(no verses, unfortunately)

Singing this song is one of my favorite memories of public school choir class (and one of my early fascinations with verses in popular song - I really like these). I was in jr. high, and we were putting on a Christmas program with the high school choir. I remember practicing this number over and over and loving every minute of it. Can they even sing this in public school any more? It's not overtly religious, of course, but there's that questionable "Parson Brown" ... It would probably be okay if they switched it to "Imam Brown," since school tots are encouraged to be multi-cultural, as long as it's not Christian. I'm sort of a heathen, but I do resent the scouring of Christ from the Christmas, er, holiday season. An aside on good Parson Brown - another memory is of the cut-up of the sr. high choir trying to bribe the soloist who would be singing that passage to sing Parson Fuzz when we did the concert, for some unknown reason. (He didn't succeed). I think he was the same wag who made brownies containing ex-Lax for the after-concert party.

Another favorite I remember from that choir season is the beautiful "Oh, Holy Night." I remember the choir director pounding her fist on the piano, yelling, "Rest, rest, REST!" while trying to get us to get our timing right and not come in too early (we'd loused it up a couple dozen times at that point):

Oh holy night! The stars are brightly shining,
It is the night of the dear Savior's birth. (Rest, rest, REST!)
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
Till He appear'd and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.

Fall on your knees! Oh, hear the angel voices!
Oh night divine, Oh night when Christ was born;
Oh night divine, Oh night, Oh night Divine.

I'm SURE that one's not allowed ... which is a shame.

1 comment:

Trombonology said...

Such entertaining memories! ...

... and I loved the comments on
the Christmas issue.