Loved Then, Loved Now: In Jesus

That as a post title frankly makes me nervous but it is what it is, a pattern of structure for the title.

Confirmation Bias, I knew it would be

My soul is crushed. There is no light.
I can not see. I cannot fight.
But what I know, must be right, ever only specious.

my own satire of it

Okay, as post title suggests, that’s not the original words. I’ve since thrown Baby Jesus out with the dirty bathwater.

I’ve tried in vain a thousand ways my fears to quell, my hopes to raise; but what I need, The Bible says, is ever only Jesus.

My soul is night, my heart is steel. I can
not see, I cannot feel; For light, for life, I must appeal, In simple faith to Jesus.

He died, He Lives. He reigns, he pleads; There’s love in all his words and deeds. There’s all a guilty sinner needs, for ever more in Jesus.

Tho’ some should sneer and some should blame, I’ll go with all my guilt and shame, I’ll go to him because His name, above all names is Jesus.

“In Jesus” by Robert Harkness, (music)/James Procter(lyrics) written in 1903

The iambic spin off is a comfort. As is the rhythm itself. And for a decade or more I carried the original poem in my pocket as an antidote to the despair of depression.To it I’m grateful for its help as a bridge.

As I encountered it first in the 80s, it was only the first two stanzas and marked as written by anonymous.

In fact Harkness (2 March 1880—8 May 1961) wrote it. He was an Australian composer, musical genius, and pianist on the Revival circuit. Quoted as adapting his music to where they toured, he said,

The weather has much to do with his adjusting the music to the assembled company. If it is a stormy night the voices of the people as a rule have not got the range that they have on a crisp cold night. In the first instance they will not sing as high as on a cold night. In the morning the voice is lower in range. He explained that if he played in the same key morning and evening, the singing would not be the success that it should be. In the morning the au­dience will sing up to D, while in the evening it will sing up to F.

If church organists would watch this to keep the music of the hymns within the range of the voices of the people of the audience they would have better singing, and therefore a better tone to the service.

In a small hall, or one where the ceiling is low, it is also necessary to keep the voices down as regards the range, otherwise what would sound well in a large hall, would sound like screeching.”

Much like Emily Dickinson poems can be sung to the Yellow Rose of Texas, this can map a regularity like the heart. And how can you unlove anything you once loved?