Am I a snob? Of course I am. Despite dressing down to the point where Mrs LdP prefers to walk ten paces in front I spoil this raggedness by using big words when I meet a neighbour. Merely admitting to opera turns me into un grand prétentieux. As does italicised French through my blog.
Yet, left to myself, preparing my brunch, I sing hymns. Nothing snob about hymns. Often I mock them for their naivete. Now it’s time to list my favourities.
I like When I Survey The Wondrous Cross because it was my Granny’s favourite. The tune is upbeat but, as usual, I go for good (or goodish) lyrics. Here’s the concise last verse;
Were the whole realm of nature mine,
It were an offering far too small;
Love so amazing, so divine,
Demands my soul, my life, my all.
In The Bleak Midwinter (“Snow had fallen, snow on snow.”) has already been mentioned as has Love Divine All Love Excelling (“Changed from glory into glory.”)
But what about Christian Dost Thou See Them? Mainly for the lines that immediately follow:
While the hosts of Midian
Prowl and prowl around.
Christian up and smite them…”
Muscular Christianity, you would agree.
Another favourite was inherited from my mother, a quondam churchgoer: Wondrous Things of Thee are Spoken, because she always broke off to laugh at:
With the camp of God surrounded,
Thou mayest smile at all thy foes.
This is the season for forgiveness so perhaps a gesture towards my birthplace, the West Riding of Yorkshire (now West Yorkshire). This one starts well, but fades.
Hills of the North, rejoice;
River and mountain-spring,
Perhaps when the technology’s improved a conference-call sing-song with like-minded unsnobs. The pic’s York Minster.