Sunday, July 01, 2012

My Country

It's an interesting time to be an American, however you came by that moniker.  With Supreme Court rulings challenging and being challenged, immigration laws changing, election campaigns spewing out rhetoric...the privilege of being an American sometimes gets lost in all the muddle.  There's nothing like traveling abroad to give you perspective--even travel to exotic countries, but of course most especially to third-world countries.  Wherever you go, though, you will invariably be glad to come back, no matter where it is you call home.  That has been my experience at least.

Years ago, I learned a song in choir--7th grade vaguely sticks in my mind.  I'd forgotten about it until I heard it again this morning, sung by the legendary Mormon Tabernacle Choir on their program "Music and the Spoken Word."  As I listened to the words sung against the photographic backdrop of sites all over the country (most of which I recognized for having seen them in person), I realized anew that no matter the charms of other places, there is still no place like home, and I'm not only glad, I'm proud, to call the United States of America my home.

This Is My Country

This is my country! Land of my birth!
This is my country! Grandest on earth!
I pledge thee my allegiance, America, the bold,
For this is my country to have and to hold.

What diff'rence if I hail from North or South
Or from the East or West?
My heart is filled with love for all of these.
I only know I swell with pride and deep within my breast
I thrill to see Old Glory paint the breeze.

With hand upon heart I thank the Lord For this my native land,
For all I love is here within her gates.
My soul is rooted deeply in the soil on which I stand,
For these are mine own United States.

This is my country! Land of my choice!
This is my country! Hear my proud voice!
I pledge thee my allegiance, America, the bold,
For this is my country! To have and to hold.