Monday, May 24, 2004

The Fiddle and the Drum

I recently dug out some CD's of some REALLY old records...to listen to while I was furiously cleaning house in preparation for my out-of-town guests.  I came across the album "Clouds" by Joni Mitchell.  Recorded in 1969.  By a Canadian singer/songwriter.  The following is the text of a song called "The Fiddle and the Drum."  Remeber, this was written and recorded in 1969.  Viet Nam War era.  Thirty-five years ago.  How true is it to how our "allies" in the world feel about us now, in 2004, in the middle of this Iraq Debacle?

"And so once again

My dear Johnny, my dear friend

And so once again your are fightin' us all

And when I ask you why

You raise your sticks and cry, and I fall

Oh, my friend

How did you come

To trade the fiddle for the drum?

 

You say I have turned

Like the enemies you've earned

But I can remember

All the good things you are

And so I ask you please

Can I help you find the peace and the star

Oh, my friend

What time is this

To trade the handshake for the fist?

 

And so once again

Oh, America my friend

And so once again

you are fighting us all

And when we ask you why

You raise your sticks and cry and we fall

Oh, my friend

How did you come

To trade the fiddle for the drum?

 

You say we have turned

Like the enemeies you've earned

But we can remember

All the good things you are

 And so we ask you please

Can we help you find the peace and the star

Oh, my friend

We have all come

To fear the beating of your drum.

5 comments:

  1. Sooooo appropriate right now, considering the current sentiment.  I never heard that song, at least not that I can remember.  I graduated HS in 1971 at 17, so I remember a lot about the era...unfortunately, mostly the body counts on the evening news.  Horrifying!  Now I am a soldier's mom, and I cringe at the thought of him going over there.  Thank goodness, he hasn't gone yet.  Probably soon, unfortunately.  Oh, and we lost a hometown soldier the other day and this is really a small town.  So sad.  Lisa

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  2. Just found your wonderful journal and I have been poking around and thoroughly enjoying your writing.  Wow, I have not heard that song since Vietnam.  I would not have remembered it, or Joni Mitchell's clear voice singing it -- thank you.  
    Also class of '71 here.

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  3. " Clouds " is a wonder ful CD...Isn`t both sides now on it?
    V

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  4. hestiahomeschoolMay 29, 2004 at 8:54 PM

    a beautiful song--I've heard it sung acapella by a young Irish girl...it made the hair on my arms stand up.

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  5. The only Vietnam Era song I remember, that was related to the war anyhow, is "Billy Don't Be a Hero." I think my babysitter had a friend over in Vietnam and she would play that song over and over. :-) ---Robbie

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