This is me, Eccles

This is me, Eccles
This is me, Eccles

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Bad hymns 26

Today is an historic occasion, as this is the first time that we are inviting back an Eccles Bad Hymn Award author who has already spoken to us. We talked to Estelle White a few months ago about her remarkable hymn The Perfect Face, but the nominations are for the hymn, not the author, so here she is again with Moses, I know you're the man.

E: Estelle, it always moves me when I see that one of your hymns is scheduled... in fact sometimes it moves me out of the church completely. Welcome back.

EW: It's great to be with you again, Eccles. You're really going to appreciate this hymn.

E: "Moses, I know you're the man" the Lord said.
"You're going to work out my plan..."

I've got it - A man, a plan, a canal - Panama! One of the world's great palindromes!

Panama canal

Moses's cunning plan is to lead his people across the Panama canal.

EW: No, no, Eccles, no canals. What the Lord says next is that Moses should lead the Israelites out of slavery and He will make them a wandering race, called the people of God.

E: Well that's a very good offer, if you like wandering, I suppose. Are you sure that the wandering idea didn't come later, when the Israelites started misbehaving? It's not in the original contract.

EW: Let me sing the chorus, Eccles, as you'll have to sing it four times yourself:

So ev'ry day
we're on our way,
for we're a travelling, wandering race
called the people of God.
E: I see... well, no, I don't. You're identifying us with the Israelites lost in the desert? Or some other walking party?

Star Wars

Is Estelle White thinking of us?

EW: Anyway, the rest of the hymn simply wrote itself. I rang all the changes on travelling, wandering, vagabond, moving... until I ran out of steam.

E: With some brilliant couplets on the way, I see.

Don't get too set in your ways,
Each step is only a phase.
This doesn't actually make a lot of sense if you think about it, does it? I would have preferred:
I seem to be lost in a maze:
It must be one of those days.

EW: Try this instead:

Look at the birds in the air,
They fly unhampered by care.
E: With respect, Estelle, are we not getting away from the main message of the song? We're having a race.

London Marathon

We're a travelling wandering race.

EW: Well, nearly right, Eccles. Anyway I am delighted to know that at least three separate people nominated my hymn.

E: Yes, I've arranged counselling for them. Estelle, thank you very much.

Previous entries for the Eccles Bad Hymn Award:

Lord of the Dance.    Shine, Jesus, shine.    Enemy of apathy.    Walk in the Light.
Kum Ba Yah.    Follow me.    God's Spirit is in my heart.    Imagine.    Alleluia Ch-ch.
It ain't necessarily so.    I, the Lord of sea and sky.    Colours of day.    The red flag.
Go, the Mass is ended.    I watch the sunrise.    Bind us together, Lord.    Our god reigns.
My way.    Ding-Dong! The witch is dead.    If I were a butterfly.
Journeys ended, journeys begun.    The Galilee song.    The perfect face.
Jesus Christ the apple tree.    On eagle's wings.


  1. I was expecting you to bring in " I was born under a wandering star"
    Appreciative but mildly disappointed of somewhere East of Eden

    1. As usaul, I expects my loyal readers to come up with some spiritaully nuorishin ideas wot I missed.

  2. Paula N Wood has been at it again for this occasion - "Gathering Moses"; Psalmody: Palindrome 141 & "Canter of My Life".