Memphis

Songs & Stories From Home Episode 54

Let justice roll down like water, righteousness like a mighty stream.
For our grandsons and granddaughters remember to remember the dream

 

Welcome to Songs and Stories from Home as we continue to Remember the Dream. This week Memphis

As I remember them now, 52 years after the facts, the ghastly murders of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert Kennedy; two singular events woven together over decades into some once unimaginable bloodstained tapestry, complete with the fraying threads of faith and hope and love. I am struck even more these days by what their lives represented and their deaths portended, and all we’ve found we’ve lost. Here in the middle of September of 2020 in a world burning and melting sickened by denial and neglect in a country choosing to continue to be not one nation but one at war with itself. 

There is something about being if not in the room where it happened in the place where it happened. In June of 1968 I stood in the kitchen hallway of the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles where Senator Kennedy had been shot days earlier. And standing there words that ended so many of his speeches played silently in my head then as they do now. “Come my friends tis not too late to seek a newer world.” 

Then years later on half a dozen Pilgrimages visiting the Mason Temple in Memphis, Tennessee I silently mouth Dr. King’s words while standing at the podium where he made his final speech on that storm filled night April 3, 1968. “I just want to do God’s will. And he’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over and I’ve seen the Promised Land. So I’m happy tonight…Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.”

Then with my fellow travelers I get on the bus for the little over a mile ride to the Lorraine Motel and stand below the balcony where King stood when he was shot. Before getting back on the bus we form a circle and sing together: We shall overcome, we shall live in peace, we’ll walk hand in hand some day, deep in my heart I do believe we shall overcome some day.  

I visited Arlington Cemetery for the first time in 1969 when Robert Kennedy’s resting place next to his brother contained only a simple white cross. More recently I spent time in the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Park in Atlanta, containing among other sites Dr. King’s birthplace, and the place he preached with his father, and the place he now rests next to his wife. Places that invite us to remember and to dream.

In the Book of Genesis (37:19) there’s a moment when Joseph is approaching his brothers who say to themselves, here comes the dreamer, let’s slay him and see what becomes of his dreams. Now more than ever we need to remember the dreamers – and more important remember the dream.  

 

Let justice roll down like water, righteousness like a mighty stream.
For our grandsons and granddaughters remember to remember the dream

 

Songs & Stories From Home | Mark Pearson Music

One of Those Times in a Life | Mark Pearson Music

Join me and help support the Journey.

Join me on Patreon and help support the Journey

Join me on Patreon and help support the Journey.

Join Now