Sunday, February 20, 2011

40: Issa's Sunday Service, #91

Today's song, "40" by U2, is based on the Psalm 40, lifting a great deal of the lyric directly from the Bible.   Here's U2's rendering:

I waited patiently for the Lord
He inclined and heard my cry
He brought me up out of the pit
Out of the miry clay

I will sing, sing a new song
I will sing, sing a new song

How long to sing this song?
How long to sing this song?
How long...
How sing this song

He set my feet upon a rock
And made my footsteps firm
Many will see
Many will see and fear

I will sing, sing a new song
I will sing, sing a new song
I will sing, sing a new song
I will sing, sing a new song

How long to sing this song?
How long to sing this song?
How long..

"40" comes from the album War, the most famous song from which is "Sunday Bloody Sunday," a song which dealt with the Bloody Sunday massacre in Northern Ireland.  The reason I mention it is that, injected into the lines from Psalm 40 in U2's rendition, you'll find the refrain "How long, how long to sing this song," which it shares with "Sunday Bloody Sunday."  "Sunday" opens the album, "40" closes it; the refrain they share book ends the theme of how long, how long must this go on (and on and on).

Something we continue to ask about Iraq and Afghanistan. 


This week's featured poems come from Lilliput Review #108, the broadside entitled "Selected Wu Songs" by the poet Linda Joan Zeiser.  Two other poems from this broadside have been previously posted here.  Enjoy:

Long, black cat stalks a crooked path,
a hint of anguish fill the dawn.
Violet smoke lifts from the incense stone,
as the duckweed bobs on the still, green pond.

Red strawberry bursts across my tongue,
her juices fan my woman-lust.
These crimson reds in a violet dusk,
move my heart into her ecstasy.
Linda Joan Zeiser

whichever way I turn...
translated by David G. Lanoue


Send a single haiku for the Wednesday Haiku feature.  Here's how.
Go to the LitRock web site for a list of all 90 songs
Hear 'em all at once on the the LitRock Jukebox


Charles Gramlich said...

Good stuff. I thought when this album came out that U2 would become one of my favorite bands, but they have done a lot of very slow stuff that I don't care for. They also did Bullet the blue sky, though, which is one of the greatest rock songs ever.

Issa's Untidy Hut said...


I think for a lot of folks the band peaked early. Still, great to have this fine work.


Anonymous said...

any chance that I can meet this "Red Strawberry" ?

am presently interviewing for a new, suck-you-lent, Muse...
as my old one left me for a bowl of Noh Phat Sour Cream


snowbird said...

songs in the night
we will sing as long as their's night... Great stuff... Many thanks to U2

Pris said...

Excellent post!

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Thanks, Pris ... glad you liked ...