Sunday, September 24, 2017

Song for Sunday: Seasons in the Sun

I always thought of this as a nostalgic song. It sort of is, but I guess my knowledge of the lyrics didn't go beyond the chorus.I always thought of it as a happy song.

Yesterday, I heard this played by a band at an Out of the Darkness Rally/Fundraiser to prevent suicide. The lyrics really are sad. I did some research, and learned that Terry Jacks actually wrote this about a friend dying of cancer and saying good-bye to a friend, his father, and his daughter. However, it was based on a French song, le Moribund, which was basically a suicide note, though not from the author, rather from a charchter.

The French song:

Jacques Brels version .. le Moriband.. the original of Seasons in the Sun Translated from French into English

Good-bye, my wife, I loved you well
Good-bye, my wife, I loved you well, you know,
But I'm taking the train for the Good Lord,
I'm taking the train before yours
But you take whatever train you can;
Goodbye, my wife, I'm going to die,
It's hard to die in springtime, you know,
But I'm leaving for the flowers with my eyes closed, my wife,
Because I closed them so often,
I know you will take care of my soul. 

Even though Seasons in the Sun is not about suicide, it has a tone that fits with suicide prevention. A few facts a gathered from my brief stop at the rally. 

  • 90% of people who commit suicide have a diagnosable and treatable mental illness at the time of their death. Five to 10% of suicides take place in mental hospitals.
  • First responders have a suicide rate four times that of the general population, but there is no funding for programs to help
  •  Older adults have the highest suicide rates, more than 50% higher than young people
 Good mental health care would be the best suicide prevention. Something to work for. 

Here's today's Song for Sunday. May it lead you to prayer for the suicidal and the dying. 



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