59th STREET BRIDGE SONG by Paul Simon
Hear the song performed in concert at:
Slow down, you move too fast, you’ve got to make the morning last
Just kickin’ down the cobble-stones, lookin’ for fun and feelin’ groovy… Feeling groovy…
Hello lamp-post, what’s cha knowing, I’ve come to watch your flowers growin’
Ain’t cha got no rhymes for me, do-it-do-do, feelin’ groovy… Feeling groovy
I’ve got no deeds to do, no promises to keep
I’m dappled and drowsy and ready to sleep
Let the morning time drop all its petals on me
Life I love you, all is groovy…
59th Street Bridge Song was written by Paul Simon in 1966 and released on the Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme album by Simon and Garfunkel. “Life I love you,” they sing joyfully, and it is easy to like this song. Granted, we all have those good days when “all is groovy,” and also some bad days when we’d rather sing like the Eurogliders “I don’t want to live here anymore” (see Meditation #310); but for the most part, we do want to keep positive and upbeat about life, and this is certainly an upbeat song.
I get tired of all the pain, trouble, tragedy, worry, fear, misunderstanding, frustration, mistakes, illnesses, and regrets of this life. And when this feeble life is over, I won’t regret leaving this ‘vale of tears,’ as the old preachers used to call it. But I do love God’s gift of life! This ‘vale of tears’ is not what God intended, and if God invites me to eternal life in a perfect home, I want to take him up on it. God offers in heaven a restoration of life as he intended it to be, and I am interested. If he is so gracious as to want me there, why would I not want to hear about it? I do not understand the casual disinterest of someone like Clint Eastwood (Meditation #311 and #312).
I am not as brave in the face of death as Blood, Sweat, and Tears when they sang “I‘m not scared of dying and I don’t really care” (See Meditation #298). I do love this life God has given me, and I do care about its end, and, about what comes next. Even if this world is a ‘vale of tears,’ it is still also a ‘wonderful world’ as Louie Armstrong used to sing; and if God has an even better one prepared for me, I want to be there.
Life, I love you. –Paul Simon
Because I live, you also shall live. –Jesus
Listen to Louie Armstrong sing “What a Wonderful World:”
Genesis 1:31a — God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.
Psalm 24:1 — The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.
Revelation 21:1a… 3-4 — Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth… , and I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
O Creator of all things that are,
I lift up my heart in gratitude to Thee for this day’s happiness:
For the mere joy of living,
For all the sights and sounds around me,
For the sweet peace of the country and the pleasant bustle of the town,
For all things bright and beautiful,
For friendship and good company,
For work to perform and the skill and strength to perform it,
For a time to play when the day’s work is done,
And for health and a glad heart to enjoy it.
Yet let me never think, O eternal Father, that I am here to stay. Let me still remember that I am a stranger and pilgrim on this earth. For here we have no continuing home, but we seek one to come. Preserve me by Thy grace, good Lord, from so losing myself in the joys of earth that I may have no longing left for the purer joys of heaven. Let not the happiness of this day become a snare to my too worldly heart. And if, instead of happiness, I have today suffered any disappointment or defeat, if there has been sorrow where I hoped for joy, or sickness where I had looked for health, give me grace to accept it from Thy hand as a loving reminder that this is not my home.
I thank Thee, O Lord, that Thou hast so set eternity within my heart that no earthly thing can ever satisfy me wholly. I thank Thee that every present joy is so mixed with sadness and unrest as to lead my mind upwards to the contemplation of a more perfect blessedness. And above all I thank Thee for the sure hope and promise of an endless life which Thou hast given me in the glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ my Lord. Amen.
–John Baillie, Diary of Private Prayer