It’s been over a week since the world lost Pete Seeger.
Much has been written about him in the days since, and yet the video above is his own last word. Found via Howie Klein’s Twitter feed, as he explains, the footage comes from Lara Bergthold a producer of the film Pete Seeger: The Power of Song.
As Howie tweeted:
Lara Bergthold, who made the Pete Seeger doc sent me the last scene just now, which has Pete giving his own eulogy: http://t.co/G4UtAZSYLm
— Howie Klein (@downwithtyranny) January 29, 2014
In the video Seeger sings:
To my old brown earth and to my old blue sky
I now give these last few molecules of I
And you who sing
And you who stand nearby
I do charge you not to cry
Guard well our human chain
Watch well you keep it strong
As long as sun will shine
And this our home
Keep your end sweet and green
For now I’m yours
And you are also mine
Seeger was able to leverage music not just to tell stories but also to really move people. The outpouring of memories and songs and eulogies since his passing are a testament to that.
Music is its own kind of magic, Seeger tapped into its potential as a force for humanity and in his parting sentiments he further encourages us all to keep that practice alive.
Once upon a time wasn’t singing a part of every day life? As much as talking, physical exercise and religion. Our distant ancestors wherever they were in this world sang while pounding rain, paddling canoes, or walking long journeys– can we begin to make our lives once more all of a piece? Finding the right songs and singing them over and over is a way to start. And when one person taps out of… another leads into the melody or when three people discover a harmony they never knew existed, or a crowd joins in on a chorus as though to raise the ceiling a few feet higher, then they also know there is hope for the world.
He will long be missed.