Tuesday Poem – Dona Nobis Pacem

A musical poem today and an appropriate post for Anzac Day. This exquisite rendition of Dona Nobis Pacem is sung by  Elizabeth von Trapp, whose grandfather and mother founded the von Trapp Family singers. (The ‘Sound of Music’ is based on their story).

Yesterday in a conversation with friends, the song Dona Nobis Pacem (the Latin words for Grant us Peace) came up. (Someone had heard it on the early morning Radio NZ Concert programme.) Dona Nobis Pacem is well known as a musical round or canon. I love singing rounds; the joining in and harmonising of different voices so satisfying to all performers. To me it’s like a musical poem, which is why I have labelled it as my Tuesday Poem.

No one really knows whence this one originated. The words are found in the Latin mass and various composers including Bach have based music on this phrase. Here is an interesting discussion on the topic

Today, the 25th April, is Anzac Day,  It commemorates all New Zealanders and Australians killed in war and also honours returned servicemen and women. To read more go to the NZ History site.

As a child I found it an exciting day. Holiday or not I have strong memories of sitting in the school hall. The highlight for me was the lusty singing of God Defend New Zealand…our very patriotic National Anthem, plus the visit of local dignitaries. But I was too young then to understand the waste which is war.

For me peace begins at home and in our communities. And just yesterday I heard that on Anzac Day 2016 a new tradition of peace making, was set to begin.‘Serve for New Zealand’, founded by Christchurch’s Student Volunteer Army (SVA), in partnership with the RSA and the University of Canterbury, was  launched this Anzac Day and will invite New Zealanders to pledge an hour or more of their time to give back to the community. How inspiring is that?!

For more Tuesday Poems please go to the Tuesday Poem archive and site here.