Thursday, January 1, 2015

At A New Years Party : A Sharper Focus on A Christmas Carol






 Our kind of New Years Eve Party this year was a quiet one spent at home in front of our cozy Christmas hearth enjoying Chinese take out and watching a movie: “Chasing Liberty” while our two fellas were back at camp in Saskatchewan taking their turn working the Christmas Holiday.

When it comes to ringing in the New Year, I never make it past 10 p.m. and sleep isn’t the only reason for it. Since I was a kid I have disliked celebrating New Years Eve, not really sure exactly why.
It always makes me sad to see the old year fall below the new one on the digital clock knowing it will never return not that I would want another Groundhog Day : )

I know what you’re thinking; leaving the bad stuff behind is good, I know, right? 
Maybe it’s not knowing the future of the New Year and feeling vulnerable to it. Maybe because it marks another year over, another year older , another year closer to the numbers that keep track of time, my time, and our time together. But I don’t feel the same towards the old year, which now no longer keeps a calendar and has revealed all of its hidden secrets. 
There is no longer a need to be afraid of it.

So this New Years Eve I believe I changed for the better and kept my promise to all that I would celebrate the coming New Year with my daughter. I almost failed because at 10 p.m. I was sleeping 😴

…..but above all, it was what transpired on New Years Eve Day that really made me think of the coming New Year .

If one looks closely, very closely and listens, to have eyes to see and ears to hear, like Scrooge realized in the end to be quiet essential to one’s happy soul then without fail one will discover there are Treasures all around and for everyone. Treasures in Books and their stories, in works of art and in the background music of movies.

And so it was the music that brought me to write this post today but not from watching the movie but rather from listening to Rob Snow on the Lowell Green Christmas Special on CFRA in Ottawa last week when a caller asked him to play “Barbara Allen” from "A Christmas Carol". As I was listening to it I recalled the scene in my mind and just had to track it down for myself  so I could play it as much as I would like, unfortunately I couldn't find the song in its entirety but was able to find a good clip on Youtube. Not only was I lucky to find the song but happy to discover  how there is people out there just like me who also found it important to appreciate all of the different elements comprised in the movie “ A Christmas Carol” creating a beautiful masterful Piece of timeless art in film format. In my search for the song I stumbled upon three excellent sites.

First was Youtube with the song “Barbara Allen” uploaded by  Compositorum .
It was here I first realized there were others who loved the same qualities of the film as I do:like these two kindred friend's quotes below,

" That someone else made a point of selecting out this clip, simply because it is the segment where they sing "Barbara Allen", darn near restores my faith in humanity.  THANK YOU for this.  My family and I always considered this song and this sequence of the story to be an especially touching moment.  I am so happy to see so
Few films are able to so strongly elicit so many emotions so completely.  I'm a 50 year old professional, but, at different times in the film, I feel empathy, anger, pity, guilt, bewilderment, wonderment, sadness, overwhelming joy to the point of true tears...  If you can sit through the entire film and not choke out a few tears, I'm astounded.  When the spirit of Christmas present answers scrooge's question about what resources the boy and girl clinging to the spirit have, and he answers "are there no prisons?...are there no workhouses?...I lose it." ~ drtwatman

Compositorum Courtesy of  Compositorum on Youtube

" If you don't have a tear in your eye at this moment from the movie, with this song as a background....surely you are not human! " ~ Robert Genis

Secondly, I came across a writer's site http://www.asharperfocus.com
 Norman. N Holland  who's essay on "A Christmas Carol" is truly the best I've read. His detailed comments to all of the essential elements to the movie were wonderful to read and totally agreed on his overall views of the film. 
Enjoyed it tremendously!
Please take a moment and do have a read. So happy to have found his site. I can learn a lot from him.

And Thirdly, Nora Steele's Etsy Store OCULUSEYE CHARLES DICKENS where the above pictures of "A Christmas Carol and The Cricket on the Hearth Book originate from. (I bought the book!!! Can't wait for it to arrive.)
I discovered Nora, a beautiful and gracious shop keeper with a heart and a kindred friend. We both chose to celebrate our New Years Eve with family , take out and a movie : ) She has one of the loveliest shops on Etsy and you can't miss it if you are like us and enjoy Charles Dickens!!!

A Christmas Carol ~ Scrooge is one of my favoured ghost stories of all time, such a beautiful classic. Ever since I landed in Canada when I was 7 years old I fell in love with England and Ghost Stories. By Happy Chance , Spiritual Intervention, a  Sad Scottish Ballad ~ "Barbara Allen" and Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" I came across these fellow Kindred Friends and in keeping with the British Tradition of Ghost Stories at Christmas I thought it best to share with you "A Christmas Carol".

My New Year's Resolution: 
And I will keep this year truthful, positive, productive, healthy and safe as much as humanly possible. I will forgive and work on forgetting. Accept what is and let go of what can't be kept. I know it will make me a calmer person : ) And keep Love " above anything else"

Oooh, and thank you to the caller who called in to the Lowell Green Christmas Show~ Rob Snow on CFRA and planting the seed !

Happy New Year!

Below are the lyrics to "Barbara Allen"

In Scarlet Town, Where I was born

There was a fair maid dwellin'

Made every youth cry "Well-a-day"

For the love of Barbara Allen

'Twas in the merry month of May

When green buds were a swellin'

Sweet William came from the west country

And fell in love with Barbara Allen.

He courted her for seven long years

'Til his heart in him was failin'

And begged his love to marry him

But "No" said Barbara Allen.

Then on a somber autumn day

When all the leaves were fallin'

Sweet William on his deathbed lay

For the love of Barbara Allen.

He sent his servant to the town,

To the place where she was dwellin'
Sayin' "You must come to my master dear,

If your name be Barbara Allen."

"For death is printed on his face,

And o'er his heart is stealin'

Then haste away to comfort him

Oh lovely Barbara Allen."

So slowly, slowly she came up

And slowly she drew nigh him

And the only words to him did say

Were "Young man I think you're dyin'"

"Oh yes, I'm sick and very low

And death is o'er me dwellin',

But better, no better, I ever shall be

If I can't have Barbara Allen."

"You may be sick and very low,

And death be o'er you dwellin,

But better, no better you ever will be

For you can't have Barbara Allen...

Don't you remember in yonder town,

In yonder town a-drinking?

You gave a toast to the ladies round,

But you slighted Barbara Allen."

"Oh yes, I remember in yonder town

When we were in the tavern,

I gave a toast to the ladies 'round,

But gave my heart to Barbara Allen."

"If on your deathbed you do lie,

What needs the tale you're tellin'?

I cannot save you from your death.

Farewell," said Barbara Allen.

He turned his pale face to the wall,

As death was drawing nigh him.

"Adieu, adieu, to my friends all. 

Be kind to Barbara Allen."

As she went walking through the fields,

She heard the birds a-singin',

And as they sang, they seemed to say:

"Hard-hearted Barbara Allen!"

As she walked further through the fields

She heard the death-bells ringing,

And every note to her did say:

"Hard-hearted Barbara Allen!"

Her eyes looked east, her eyes looked west

She spied the corpse a-comin

"Lay down, lay down the corpse!" she said,

"That I may look upon him."

And as she looked upon his face,

She bursted out a-crying,

"Oh pick me up, and take me home,

For now I am a-dyin'."

"Oh mother, Oh mother, go make my bed,

Make it both long and narrow

Sweet William died for me today

And I shall die tomorrow."

"Oh father, oh father, go dig my grave

Dig it both long and narrow,

Sweet William died of love for me

And I shall die of sorrow."

"Hard-hearted creature, him to slight,

Who hath loved me so dearly -

Oh, that I'd been more kind to him

When he was live and near me.

She on her deathbed as she lay

Begged to be buried by him

And sore repented of the day

That she did e'er deny him.

Barbara Allen was buried in the old churchyard

And William they buried nigh her

Out of William's heart, there grew a rose

Out of Barbara Allen's, a briar. 

They grew and grew up the old church wall

'Til they could grow no higher, 

And there they formed a true love's knot - 

The rose wrapp'd round the briar.


~Rasz~ said...

Oh wow! I never read the words to that song, thank you for sharing along with sharing the New Year's friends you made through an old ghost story! Your post is beautiful and moving and reminded me of the truth inside me as well. Happy New Year! Thank you for the beauty you shared on this first day of the new year. Hugs!

Annabelle said...

Hi Rasz,

Thank you so much for your very lovely comment, much appreciated. Always nice to see that sometimes my posts do touch people.

Wishing you the very best for the New Year.
Annabelle xxx

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