An Important Message From Oslo, Norway

Do you have room for this little note on your excellent Pete Seeger tribute page?

After the terrible terror attack in Oslo, that killed 77 people  and  was performed by a right wing extremist, the answer from both the  government and the people was: More democracy, more openness, more  love. In Oslo there was a mourning mass meeting 25.07.  200 000 people  showed up with roses in their hands. This is 1/3 of the total  population in Oslo!

The Norwegian Poet Nordahl Grieg’s poem ” To the young ones” from 1936  became Norway’s second national anthem during the mournings. But a  Pete Seeger song also was there.

During the mourning in Oslo, the mourners sang the Norwegian version  of Pete Seeger’s song ”The rainbow race”, translated by Pete’s friend  Lillebjørn (”Little Bear”) Nilsen. Everybody held each other’s hands,  raised their flowers and sang together. And everybody knew the words.  They were the positive message we wanted to give each other these  terrible days.

Thank you, Pete, for giving us one of the songs we needed in such an  ugly time!

Yours,
Magne Lindholm
Oslo, Norway

MY RAINBOW RACE

One blue sky above us
One ocean lapping all our shore
One earth so green and round
Who could ask for more
And because I love you
I’ll give it one more try
To show my rainbow race
It’s too soon to die.

1. Some folks want to be like an ostrich,
Bury their heads in the sand.
Some hope that plastic dreams
Can unclench all those greedy hands.
Some hope to take the easy way:
Poisons, bombs. They think we need ’em.
Don’t you know you can’t kill
all the unbelievers?
There’s no shortcut to freedom.

2. Go tell, go tell all the little children.
Tell all the mothers and fathers too.
Now’s our last chance to learn to share
What’s been given to me and you.

Words and Music by Pete Seeger (1967)
(c) 1970 by Sanga Music Inc.

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3 Comments »

  1. Rick A. Williams said

    Dear Mr. Seeger: I am only an old reprobate pastor; too young and poor to retire and seemingly unemployable. My mentor from Ohio turned me on to your activism/music years ago. He had the honor of helping bring M.L.K. to Ohio to speak against racism and hearing you in person. I recently heard “I Am a Soldier” for the first time and it touched me deeply… I know I am pretty much just one fan among millions and you must be tired; but I felt compelled to try to ask you if you could somehow sponsor a walk on Washington. It would be to drive home the extreme plight of the long-term umemployed, such as myself, and peace between warring politicians. I’ve left the Church and barely have a couple of friends anymore… I want to march but I suspect I really need someone with name-recognition, know-how and credibility. I also believe that supporting our president NOW could mean a very positive turning point in the cause for Peace over conflict. Thanks for your time. Humbly Yours, Rick A. Williams

  2. Aoife Daly said

    What a lovely thought, Pete’s music comforting you in Oslo after such a terrible event. Lots of love, Aoife in Ireland.

  3. Imam said

    Wow… So Touching My Heart.

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