The fun musical pieces I enjoyed listening to with my children growing up include John Rutter’s musical fables, particularly “The Reluctant Dragon”, and “The Wind in the Willows”, sung by the renowned King’s Singers, and based on children’s stories written by Kenneth Grahame. The closing songs of each are particularly poignant, and the closing song from “The Reluctant Dragon” in particular speaks to a new start between the poetry loving dragon and the townsfolk. Looking back over the events of the past year, I’m hoping we can see a new start and better relationship between the institutional church and all those who’ve been hurt by actions taken during the year.

So, here is John Rutter’s “Let’s Begin Again”, the closing song from “The Reluctant Dragon”.

So let’s begin again; try another way;
Let’s begin again; there’s a better way.
Rule a line and start once more;
Learning from what’s gone before.
Let’s begin again;
Let’s find a way to start again.
So can we get it right this time? Possibly.
Another chance in sight? Take things easily.
Is there time to care again;
Time to hope and share again?
Is it all too late?
Too late to try it out again?
The starlight in the skies and the moonlight;
The firelight in your eyes and the candlelight
Ev’ry creature softly bless,
Touching each with tenderness,
Helping us to see,
To see a better way ahead.
The snow upon the downs wraps things silently;
Nothing mortal shows; let’s step carefully.
Make new tracks together,
Walk hand in hand;
And never run and hide;
The paths that we must tread lie side by side.

(text adapted from the Kenneth Grahame story by David Grant)

With all best wishes for a much better New Year!