Thursday, 29 December 2011

Chi mi a-rithist thu


Gone is the past, let us start a new
Let this hope of peace, always remain
Spirit of Scotia, be strong and true
Then your children will smile again.

And the lone piper piped Highland Cathedral as we bowed our heads one last time in a small chapel in Benmore, Johannesburg, to the memory of Jon Hrusa. The Highland Cathedral is one the most popular bagpipe melodies, it is played before all Scottish international rugby matches, a favourite at many weddings and is proposed to be the new Scottish national anthem. But what I liked about today’s lone piper playing the Highland Cathedral and not the traditional Flowers of the Forest was that this piece was piped when they lowered the Union Jack for the last time over Hong Kong. And now it was piped at the memorial of Jon Hrusa for the last time. They say that the sound of bagpipes could reach across to the great divide and that our departed loved ones can hear them. They say...

Lonely the exile, o'er distant seas,
The home of their birth, gone from their eyes.
Bring back their souls o'er the ocean breeze
To the land where their fathers lie.

And as I heard the words of Heather, trying to hold it together, as she paid tribute to Jon, what stood out in my mind was Jon among these mass of kids, surrounding him while he was snapping away and then the children went back to what they were doing before "Smiling, crying and spreading porridge on each other". Sometimes...

Sometimes, when I... and the pipes played on.
Goodbye Jon, chi mi a-rithist thu.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I guess I can say I am an amateur photographer, having worked for a Caxton Community paper for a year, then burning out because I was too passionate about my job. In your post and Dean's and Heather's you have rekindled that passion, just by the way you have portrayed a seemingly passionate person. Though I will never know him, just asAnton Hammerl, he will inspire me to somehow continue to do what I love. And to Heather, "Your tribute / blog is so moving. It makes me feel I can read your heart. Condolences for your extreme loss!" Kathy

2summers.net said...

Thank you, Kathy. -Heather

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