Silence ~ an Advent Quest ~ food for earworms

The silence of one but which one?

Silence, food for earworms, not always pestilential ones.

These lines happily tunnel through my stillness:

‘One is one and all alone
And evermore shall be so.’

from Green Grow the Rushes O

24 thoughts on “Silence ~ an Advent Quest ~ food for earworms

  1. Liz Gauffreau

    I remember “Green Grow the Rushes O” from my childhood, but I don’t remember where from. Maybe church camp? I LOVED the Mark Twain essay, although that pestilent jingle may keep me awake tonight.

    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Church camp sounds like a possible source for the song. As for Mark Twain’s story; it made me laugh, but, happily, my mind is incapable of remembering that jingle and most others I hear these days. πŸ™‚

  2. thecontentedcrafter

    We used to sing this while driving with the children and I ‘sang’ it with my first year classes when teaching too. Gone but never forgotten. πŸ™‚ I don’t believe we are ever truly alone though – only think we are, either in our despair or our arrogance. I read the Twain piece, which is darkly funny while conveying that kernel of truth. And of course another beautiful photo ❀

    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you, Pauline. Steve in his comment speaks about the paradox of All Alone in the song, and, even though I love the sound of “one is one and all alone”, I find the concept of ‘alone’ very hard to grasp. As you say, we may think we are alone, we may feel it, but, in reality, we most likely are not alone.

    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you, Laleh. It is beautifully fragrant, too. I used to volunteer as a tutor for ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages). The rose was a gift from a student. I treasure it.

  3. KerryCan

    Well, if I have to have a song in my head all day, this is a good one! And I love the final verse from Burns:
    Auld Nature swears, the lovely dears
    Her noblest work she classes, O:
    Her prentice han’ she try’d on man,
    An’ then she made the lasses, O.

    Work out the details by making men and then make the women, as perfect as can be! πŸ˜‰

  4. Steve Schwartzman

    The familiar phrase “all alone” brings redundancy and paradox, given that “alone” is a contraction of “all one.” The redundancy comes with “all all one.” The paradox resides in “one” itself, which can be an isolated entity or the unification of many entities.

  5. shoreacres

    I remember “Green Grow the Rushes, O” but your mention of it reminded me of my favorite for singing — “The Keeper Did A-hunting Go.” The similar line in its refrain — “among the leaves so green-o” — probably will keep it bouncing around in my mind today. I’m surprised I remember so many of the lyrics.

    I’ve never read that Twain piece. The man was a master, and the last paragraph was perfect.

    1. Gallivanta Post author

      I haven’t read much Twain at all but, after reading this piece, I thought I should make more of an effort to read him. I don’t think I know The Keeper Did A -hunting Go but I can see how Green Go the Rushes, O would remind you of it. In a similar vein is A Frog He Would A -wooing Go, which I used to enjoy singing at school and to my children.

  6. Tish Farrell

    Oh goodness. An earworm from my past. My parents used to sing this song in odd fits of bonhomie, and we offspring would join in the chorus. You’ve sprung a rare bubble of family fun. Thank you for that little advent gift, Ann ❀

    1. Gallivanta Post author

      That makes me smile! I don’t recall my family singing it but I certainly did, very energetically, in the lovely big backyard we had in my childhood home. Most of the time, I would have been singing to myself.


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