Thursday, June 26, 2008

Mi'ma'amakim

Yesterday, when I was driving to my office, I heard a hauntingly melodic song on the radio.

It was in a language I didn’t recognize so I had no idea what they were saying, but I really liked the song.

Unfortunately, the DJ didn’t announce the name of the song or artist before I got out of the car.

Later that afternoon, I stopped at the library to pick up a Dengue Fever CD that I had requested and was waiting on hold for me.

I decided to browse the library’s CD collection.

Always a sucker for those Putumayo world music collections, I found myself in that section staring at a CD with a man in desert boots, fatigues and dreadlocks on the cover.




I had never heard of The Idan Raichel Project. Regardless, I decisively put the CD in my pile to check out.

When I got home I put the CD in my computer and began listening to the first track. I liked it, but something inside me told me to skip to the second track.

It was the song from the morning.

I was stunned! What are the chances?

I looked up and the first thing I saw was the picture of my grandparents that sits next to my desk.

At Our Wedding

My Granny looked incredibly pleased with herself and my Ady’s face was filled with laughter.

The hair on my forearm stood up.

I remembered a while back screaming at this very picture.

After the close-talking, dragon-breathed, evangelical woman tried to save my soul in the thrift store I informed my Granny that if she wanted to send me a message that she’d better do it in a way that I would trust.

Staring at their picture I suddenly needed to know what the lyrics to the song meant.

Mi'ma'amakim

From deep depths I called to you to come to me
with your return the light in my eyes will come back
it's not finished,
I am not leaving the touch of your hands
The sound of your laughter shall glow here again.

From deep depths I called to you to come to me
the moonlight I will again light your way to me
they're spread out and melted again
the touch of your hands
I whisper, ask in your ears:
Who is it that calls to you tonight - listen
who sings aloud to you under your window
who stakes his soul just for you to be happy
who will lend his hand to build you a home
who lay his life down underneath you
who like the earth at your feet shall live on
who will love you better than all your lovers
who will save you from all evil spirits
from the depths.

From depths I called to you to come to me
the moonlight will shine your way back to me
spread out and melted to the touch of your hand
I whisper in your ears and ask
Who is it that calls to you tonight.

As it turns out, the song is sung in a blend of Hebrew and Amharic.

I thought of the place my grandparents must be and imagined all the languages of the world united in one universal form.

How much they must understand now.

Thankfully, they remain all around me everywhere, showing me the way with and without them.


49 comments:

MrsWaltz said...

Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful story. Most people think I'm insane when I try to explain things like this. Probably because I don't have your gift with words, alas. And thank you also for telling us the name of the artist and album; I'm on my way to the library right now!

Ashley said...

I've got goosebumps.

Moondance said...

The hair on MY forearms is standing up!

Arwen said...

Two nights ago I has a strange ethereal occurrence. The words to the song resonate quite deeply with me right now.

Lisa Milton said...

Whenever I see the picture of your grandparents, I smile.

The twinkle in their eyes...

jakelliesmom said...

Amazing and beautiful, you and the story.

I always wonder what is "out there" for us if we just stop and listen.

Poppy Buxom said...

Amazing.

Beautiful.

Thank you.

flutter said...

absolutely beautiful

Omaha Mama said...

Wow doesn't do it, but it's all I can say. Wow. And that now the hair on my arm is standing up. Wow.

Omaha Mama said...

Seems in that picture that your grandpa is saying, "Gotcha!"

Rima said...

Oh, I'm so glad you received that gift today. I guess they were just waiting until the time was right?

The song is haunting.

kristin said...

Wow. That made me cry, a lot. I miss my grandparents, too. Thank you for the reminder that they are all around me.

bzybead said...

very poignant sister. the story and the photo together make it a whole smiling tale.

Pgoodness said...

that was lovely.

BlondeMomBlog (Jamie) said...

Wow...just wow. I miss my grandmother so much. Whenever I see a morning dove I think of her...I love that picture of your grandparents.

Beautiful post. Beautiful music.

Lovely!!!!

Sue at nobaddays said...

Lovely - and what a beautiful and touching story. It's my granny's 92nd birthday today and even though she's still alive, I feel like I am losing her slowly, slowly.

Nette @ Smiling Mom said...

What a gift! It's awesome that you were open to receive it! I'm happy to hear that you are beginning to heal from such a horrible tragedy.

Mrs. Chicken said...

Oh, how wonderful.

For weeks and months after my dad died, I heard "American Pie" on the radio whenever I was in the car.

Recently I cleaned out our den to make way for the new baby and I found some of his sheet music, for his guitar.

It was "American Pie."

I believe they were speaking to you.

carrie said...

Oh Jess, I can't even find the words.

That took my breath away.

Mama Goose said...

Wow. What a beautiful gift.

Hol&J said...

Thank you for sharing, that was beautiful.

nutmeg said...

And why is it I always visit here exactly when I need to...

Rachael said...

Wow. Amazing. I love to hear stories of people's experiences like this. It brings me faith.

Damselfly said...

[Shivers.] So cool!

SUEB0B said...

Man, way to make me sob at my desk.

Mrs. Schmitty said...

I have goose pimples!!!

QT said...

Wow Jess - that is crazy! I am so glad this happened. It really made me smile.

Joie said...

What a rare gift to get such a clear message! Your are blessed.

JCK said...

Sent chills. Absolutely no accident.

Beck said...

This story made me cry my eyes out.

marian said...

wow. thanks for that. made my hair stand on end and my eyes well up. good way to start the day!

Trenches of Mommyhood said...

This gave me chills.

Deb said...

Beautiful.

margalit said...

The bulk of the song is in Hebrew, only the chorus is not.

It's lovely and such an interesting and inpiring story. Thanks for telling it.

Shaun Barrowes said...

Awesome story! That's quite the coincidence. I tried playing the video, but it didn't work, so I'm going to try again some other time.

Shaun Barrowes

Magpie said...

great tale, and a lovely song. there is synchronicity around us if we know how to see.

Shaun Barrowes said...

I got the video to work. The song is really cool! I love that kind of music--I'm a big world music fan. Thanks for helping me find it!

Bon said...

Jess, that's beautiful, and cool.

angela said...

haunting post. i love it when we sense, see and feel those connections. there is a thread that ties everything together. there is.

foop said...

Beauty.

Joy.

Sorrow.

Heaven.

Peace.

Sarcastic Mom (aka Lotus) said...

Oh, Jess. I have so few words but so much emotion, right now.

Amazing.

(And I'm with Beck.)

Kyla said...

Gorgeous.

Amanda said...

How wondrous that Jen linked to us both about our visits, and so I cam, to read yours remembering my grandfather, a man fluent in Hebrew and a devout lover of music.


May you find her again and again in the song of a summer's breeze.

Mandaroo said...

....goosebumps....
that's really beautiful, so melodic. They chose a lovely song to communicate to you with....

Ruth Dynamite said...

Wow. Powerful and amazing, Jess.

Aimee Greeblemonkey said...

*smile*

Danielle said...

This made the hair on my arms and neck stand straight up.

Beautiful.

we_be_toys said...

This gave the shivers - in a good way! I think you are definitely tuned in to your grandparents, as they are to you.

Now I have to go check out that song!

Anonymous said...

Mi'Ma'amakim
Psalms 130

OUT of the depths I have cried to You, O LORD;
Lord, hear my voice!
Let Your ears be attentive
To the voice of my supplications.

If You, LORD, should mark iniquities,
O Lord, who could stand?
But there is forgiveness with You,
That You may be feared.

I wait for the LORD, my soul waits,
And in His word I do hope.
My soul waits for the Lord
More than those who watch for the morning
Yes, more than those who watch for the morning.
O Israel, hope in the LORD;
For with the LORD there is mercy,
And with Him is abundant redemption.
And He shall redeem Israel
From all his iniquities.