David, the king, was grieved and moved

Not many recordings can bring me to tears before the words even start. This lesson from the Second Ireland Sacred Harp Convention got me where I live right away. “David’s Lamentation,” Sacred Harp 268:

David, the king, was grieved and moved
He went to his chamber and wept;
And as he went, he wept and said:
“O my son,
Would to God I had died,
For thee, O Absalom, my son!”

I’ll have a lot to say about shape note singing and Sacred Harp very shortly, as it’s the topic of my capstone project at Medill, which is due this Tuesday. Until next week, assume I am hard at work on that — unless, of course, I’m poleaxed by human voices and a good pair of headphones again.

If you, dear listener, need a bit of a balm after that emotional suckerpunch, I’d recommend, from this same convention, this beautiful, joyous “Hallelujah.”