SONG OF DEVASTATION – NUMBER 29This bleakly beautiful carol, sung to remember the story of the Holy Innocents was sent to me and my husband by someone who preferred to remain anonymous. What a deeply haunting arrangement by Kenneth Leighton. The soloist sings like an angel. The soloist is an angel! Love Susie. x

Dear Nick and Susie,
I wanted to suggest a Song of Devastation. Since I was a little child, I was always touched — and a bit scared — by the story of the Holy Innocents. Such a senseless tragedy, innocent children slain out of King Herod’s madness. Scores of theologians have tried — and failed — to find a meaning. But nothing could change the simple fact that these children are no longer here, and what is left is a grieving mother in pain for she can’t sing her child a lullaby anymore.
And yet we do sing this ancient Christmas carol and tell their story. The simple melody calls us together and somehow manages to soothe the tragedy. After centuries, the music still resonates and together we all remember these children, and with them all the ones we have lost. On this day we sing for them, and for us.
Here is a haunting arrangement by Kenneth Leighton

Coventry Carol

Lully, lullay,

Thou little tiny child,

Bye bye, lully, lullay.

Thou little tiny child,

Bye bye, lully, lullay.

O sisters too, how may we do

For to preserve this day

This poor youngling for whom we sing,

“Bye bye, lully, lullay?”

Herod the king, in his raging,

Chargèd he hath this day

His men of might in his own sight

All young children to slay.

That woe is me, poor child, for thee

And ever mourn and may

For thy parting neither say nor sing,

“Bye bye, lully, lullay.”