Saturday, May 26, 2012

Simply Saturday: America the Beautiful

Every fourth Monday in May we, in America, celebrate Memorial Day. We gather together in town halls, Veteran centers, and cemeteries across the country to remember those who have gone before fighting the good fight of freedom, and those who are currently serving in various parts of the world. Never ever forget the freedoms of America were purchased through the blood, sweat, and tears of men and women since the Revolutionary War.

Memorial Day is also the unofficial kick-off to fun in the summer sun. Remember,  our men and women are in the heat of the sun, the cold of the mountain night air, and in the darkest wildernesses they have ever experienced in their lives. In pounds and pounds of gear they traverse the deserts, the mountain trails, and through the jungles. They do this for the love of country. To preserve the nation  where they grew up, where perhaps they had fallen in love, and started a family. Just as their forefathers and mothers, and the fathers and mothers before them. The price of freedom comes with the highest cost of all - life.

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In 1904, Katherine L. Bates, composed the lyrics to America the Beautiful, set to the Materna score, composed by Samuel Ward, in 1882. This song has become beloved across the nation and is most appropriate for the remembrance of those who have served, are serving, and will transcend the years to those who will serve. It is the culmination of love, life, and the pursuit of happiness in the greatest nation in the world. Despite all the current problems and issues facing our nation today, we are blessed more than any other. It is time America looks to our blessings, rather than our curses. We are men and women of great courage and fortitude. We have the ability to solve our problems through all faith and conviction in the one thing that holds this country together, and has since 1776 - Freedom.
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O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties,
Above the fruited plain!
America! America!
God shed His grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood,
From sea to shining sea!

O beautiful for heroes proved
In liberating strife,
Who more than self their country loved,
And mercy more than life.
America! America!
May God thy gold refine,
Til all success be nobleness,
And every gain divine.

O beautiful for patriots dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam,
Undimmed by human tears.
America! America!
God mend thy every flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self control,
Thy liberty in law.

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Remember this Memorial Day weekend to thank a veteran - living or deceased - for paying the price of your  freedom to enjoy.

Simply Saturday; Simply Beautiful