ANZAC DAY – Remembrance Day – School Song.

2 May

Southern Cross Song Book -.Allans Music

ANZAC DAY –(Remembrance Day)

Words and Music by Bene Gibson Smyth.

 

This was the title of a song/hymn  we learnt at Fairfield Primary School, Victoria, Australia,  in  years prior to the outbreak of World War 11, although war clouds were threatening.  Every Anzac Day since I left the school in 1940, I sing  it, although  I never hear it sung as part of remembrance ceremonies. I wonder why. 

We were seated , cross-legged, in the Assembly Hall. The Australian Flag and timber  Honour Board for former students stood  behind the speakers.  The poem “On the twenty-fifth of  April, far across the sea, our brave Australian Soldiers stormed Gallipoli………” was recited by a student.   The President of the Fairfield Returned Servicemens’ League  always came to remind us, and share with, the families around us there who were still grieving for lost family members. The tragedy  and futility of war, and our responsibility to remember the sacrifices made, were explained, and  ‘’Lest we forget”  was repeated after the speaker.  This was very solemn thinking for 4-11 year olds 78 years ago.    There are now  thousands more young people lying in war cemeteries, or are a name on a monument. The Great War was not the war to end wars, as was hoped. There was no victory, an Armistice was signed.  I have visited war cemeteries, and  remember the grief, with this song, my  Australian lament.

Do you remember this?  It can be found on page 6 in  Allans Music Southern Cross Song Book, shown above.

ANZAC DAY SONG Bene Gibson-Smyth

Dear Allans Music Shops,   Melbourne. 

For over 80 years,  you were my second home for songs,  anthems, oratorios, songsters, keyboard music, strings,  organ  and group instrumental works,  teaching and examining music, music dictionaries and histories, and musical instruments as well. You served me well.    Central  music studio hire was available too.

Thank you, thankyou, for making a Melbourne musician’s life affordable and possible.   Your sheet music still fills my home, and I wish we could  hear again  those memorable songs and hymns for school,  church, choirs,  community, soloists, bands and orchestras.

Your sheet music still fills my home, and I miss the family music making at home.    My current weekly sessions of playing for elderly citizens prove to me,  that memory and therapeutic value from learning, hearing, sharing  and reading music early in life, even our times tables as a chant and alphabet as a class song, enriches our lives through aural memory.  Music lifts the spirit, and is a precious gift to share.
There is a song to remember for everything, as we Turn back the Hands of Time.

One Response to “ANZAC DAY – Remembrance Day – School Song.”

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