Sunday, May 16, 2010

The New Peace Movement

'Oh, Had I A Golden Thread' by Pete Seeger

Sung by Eva Cassidy

By Jo Floyd Lucas

Eva Cassidy may not be a familiar name to most, but she was gifted with the rarest combination of vision, beauty and talent. She released her first album in 1992, and in 1996, she died at the age of 33 from melanoma. She had four brief years of brilliance in the music industry with her beautiful interpretations of jazz, folk, blues, gospel, country, and standards. Incredibly, most of her music displays a prescience of her destiny and tender acceptance of her place in the world and her mission on earth.

Her mission on earth. Your mission on earth. My mission. Our mission.

I've been sensing this mission of mine for a long time now. I have a dear friend, Karen, who, from time to time, has offered to provide readings for me. She is what's called a 'sentient intuitive' reader, and has offered much in the way of good solid advice to me for the two decades since she began her own journey.

She would begin each reading with the same question, "What are you working on at this point in your life?" As a young wife and mother, and then as my children grew older, my answers to this question varied. For the last few years, though, as I've attempted to grasp what it is I really want, my answer to this question has invariably been, "I'm seeking peace."

I know I'm not alone in this quest. Many of us, especially in my age group, are experiencing the same yearning. We want to see an end to divisiveness. We want our children and grandchildren to experience life with challenges and rewards, not social strife and want. We want to work together building solutions we know are within reach to the problems we face, not continue to sling mud wantonly at each other. We are seeking peace.

We are the architects of the first major peace movement. Standing in the '70's upon the shoulders of our most beloved forefathers and mothers...people who, just years into its fragile infancy, spoke idealistically and hopefully about our country and its potential...we took on the challenges of injustices in America and worked to change them.

We now must provide our own shoulders for the next generation to stand upon. We each must answer the question, "What are you working on at this point in your life?"

I'm not asking much. You may have the resources to do great things for humanity. If that's the case, go for it! More likely, though, your financial resources are strained right now. Luckily, that's just one small category in your spreadsheet of resources. Can you visit a senior living center or day care facility and share a talent...sing, play an instrument, or read a book? Can you volunteer some time for a local food pantry or women's shelter? Can you become a beacon of light in just one child's life? That may mean something as simple as offering your smile to the lonely little girl who stands shyly in the yard as you pass by her on your walk each day. Just as you set the intention to seek peace in your life, you have already contributed to that quest for peace.

Dubby's previous post has suggested great and small ways to participate in what many are calling the Great Turning. Turning away from hostility and conflict. Turning toward a daily walk of peace. The alternative is too difficult to bear. We can, and we must do this. Before it's too late.

For me, I intend to search for that golden thread and needle so fine. I'd love to have some fun and fellowship along the way. I'd love for you to help me. Future generations are counting on us.

Oh, Had I A Golden Thread

Oh, ooh, had I a golden thread
And a needle so fine
I, I would weave a magic spell
Of the rainbow design

In it, I would weave the courage
Of women giving birth
And in it I would weave the innocence
Of the children of all the earth
Children of all the earth

Won’t you show my
My brothers and sisters
My rainbow design?

‘Cause I, I would bind up the sorrowful
With hand and heart, and mine
Oh, hand and heart, and mine

Oh, ooh, had I a golden thread
And a needle so fine
I, I would weave a magic spell
Of a rainbow design
Of a rainbow design.


  1. Jo, I never heard that song but love it! Thank you. Your post is passionate and compelling and urgent. Arms together, I'm ready to march! By the way, I wondered about the band and the arrangement. I thought I heard Billy Preston on organ but was wrong. But this piece is interesting. Seems they nailed it with one take...

  2. written by Pete Seeger? A very interesting activist in his own right. I'm with you guys.

  3. Rick, evidently Seeger played this song every week on his tv show in the '60's. I didn't even know he had a regular tv show.

  4. This is SUCH a beautiful post. As I was reading it, I kept trying to guess which one of us wrote it. Could have been any of us! That fact is so sweet.

    The Sufi acupuncturist always says to me, when I'm yearning for peace, "Go deeper." Somewhere way beneath the sturm und drang, under the storm, under the ocean currents and below the drama there is a peaceful valley we can always access.

    He is such a smart guy! And .. he's 34!!

  5. p.s. I knew I hadn't written it, of course, but I could have!

  6. Once again - I love this blog!!! Great song too!

  7. Reya, that's such a marvelous thing to say. I love that you wondered which one of us wrote this. That speaks volumes about our common purpose, doesn't it?

    I'm so glad you liked it, too, continue to be in my thoughts.


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