Back in February, I posted Goshen Oimelc, and before that I posted Goshen Yule. This is the eighth of nine songs I’ve written in the last year, borrowing ideas for tunes from traditional ballads and songs from the 1600s, 1700s and 1800s that I found through contemplator.com. The tune of Goshen Ostara is sort of based on the tune to Calton Weavers, which is a song about falling too much in love with “nancy whiskey”, aka the demon drink.
As I was listening to the tune (over and over and over again), my wife said, “that’s a very spring-in-your-step kind of tune. It would make a good spring song like the others you’ve done.” And so it did.
I am still not always comfy about singing my songs to record them, but I made a noble effort here. As always, this song and tune are based on local weather conditions where I am, on a hilltop in Goshen, Massachusetts… and at the moment it seems that the conditions described here are a little bit further on in the weather cycle than how things are right now, this year.
You are welcome to perform this song as part of a non-public or semi-public unrecorded gathering, but I recommend practicing a few times — the words are a little tricky in places!
CHORUS: Drip-Drip-Drip melts the snow from the branches; Pip-Pip-Pip sing the wrens at play; Earth makes mud as the ground un-freezes; Sun calls green to the world that's gray!
1) Rustle and pop in the last year’s leaf-fall. Beetle comes out of the oak tree’s gall. Thrush grabs worm for the first chick’s breakfast; Fox lifts ear to the oriole’s call.
2) Each new dawn fills with strange new birdsong.
Each bright noon brings a little more thaw.
Bright the sky in the west at sundown.
Sharp the bite of cold midnight’s law.
3) There’s still snow where the Sun can’t touch it.
Grass still shows in the open field.
Tracks from hare, from the mouse and chipmunk
nudge the flanks of the restless bear.
4) Warm the sun on bare shirt-sleeve shoulders; Dance in the step of the bootless feet. Bright green moss on the hips of boulders. Grins on the face of the friends you’ll meet.
5) Now the night and the day are equal; yet the light grows a little each day. Life returns from its winter sleeping, wakes as Sun sends its first spring ray. Chorus + Last two lines repeat
As I said earlier, I’ve now written eight of these songs, and posted three of which two have recordings. You can look for the others over the coming year, and with luck I’ll be able to release a collection (maybe with some instrumentation!) sometime after October 2022. In the meantime, I’d love your feedback.