Fernando

July 27, 2010

This morning Mrini wanted “I have a dream” by Abba on the way to school. So we turned on Abba. By the time I’d dropped the kids to school and reached office, we’d gone through a lot of lovely old songs and Fernando came up right after SOS. I always thought of Fernando and SOS as very similar songs; I always thought of both of them as love songs. Today, humming along as I drove alone in the car, I suddenly heard the words of the song and realized it was not a love song at all:

Can you hear the drums fernando?
I remember long ago another starry night like this
In the firelight fernando
You were humming to yourself and softly strumming your guitar
I could hear the distant drums
And sounds of bugle calls were coming from afar

They were closer now fernando
Every hour every minute seemed to last eternally
I was so afraid fernando
We were young and full of life and none of us prepared to die
And I’m not ashamed to say
The roar of guns and cannons almost made me cry

Now we’re old and grey fernando
And since many years I haven’t seen a rifle in your hand
Can you hear the drums fernando?
Do you still recall the frightful night we crossed the rio grande?
I can see it in your eyes
How proud you were to fight for freedom in this land

For some reason, the revelation came as a complete shock to me. And I’m thoroughly embarrassed to say that it suddenly brought tears to my eyes! Just as I drove into office! It was ridiculous, but the words were just so touching…

Do they do that to you?

Though maybe you have to hear the song for it to have that effect – written words are a bit more bald.

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