Sunday, November 26, 2006

26 November, 2006

Day 26 for nablopomo.

Grandpa Waltons Christmas Wish.

On Dec 19th, 1971, CBS aired a Christmas special titled "The Homecoming." It was so well received that the creator and writer, Earl Hamner Jnr. went on to write a Series called the "Waltons." This show premiered on September 14th 1972 and the last episode showed on 20 August, 1981.

I've watched untold numbers of television programs since 1957 (when my family purchased our first tv set) and I can honestly say that the "Waltons" is by far my all time favorite. I don't think I missed any programs. Being so enamored of this show, it was a no brainer that I would buy their Christmas album which was publishd in 1974. For me, the most striking presentation on the album was a piece by Will Geer ( an actor who portrayed grandpa Walton on the tv series) titled "Grandpa Walton's Christmas wish." It's not a song per se, but a soliloquy of sorts, if you will. It expresses my feelings about this time of year perfectly.

Grandpa's Christmas Wish
Lyrics by Geer, Will - Grandpa Walton
Grandpa's Christmas Message

What is Christmas? It is a time when some of your dreams come true. Every year it roles around and takes you by surprise some of the time, especially when you’re as close to a 100 years old as I am. You Can’t be time for another one, but there it is with all it’s hope and joy and the promise of the wishes granted. I bet you wonder what I wish for. What could an old man wish for? Maybe you think I would wish to be young again. I don’t want that. Being young is a painful thing. Being young and in love to boot, which most young people are, is even more agony. I’ll tell you what I wish. I’d wish for the power to return some of the love that’s been given me. I’d wish the time and place for all that giving could be commemorated like the heart I carved on the tree around your Grandmother’s and my initials. I wish too for more days to my life. Time...time to give to children some of the beauty of this Earth that has been revealed to me. A drop of water is a wondrous thing.

A spade full of earth is a kingdom in itself. A cloud is worth watching as it passes from one horizon to another. A bird building its nest is as wondrous as men building the Pyramid, and any green thing that grows is proof that God exists. It all comes into focus at Christmas. It is a tender time. We grow cautious because we open ourselves to love. We exchange gifts, but what those presents really say is "I love you." It makes some folks uncomfortable to say or hear these words. Maybe it’s because they’ve never learned the secret of the given heart. There are more takers than givers in the world. People, communities even countries spending their time grubbing and rooting for the goods of this earth like pigs after acorns in the Fall of the year. This is a country with a given heart and I pray it will always be so. It’s a good country and it’s part of our strength, something that we brought with us as pioneers that we can share with the fellow who is down on his luck, with those who suffered calamities: with the loss of their homes or land or their hope. This is a family with a giving heart. You children may squabble and bicker among yourselves but you’ve been taught to love and to give, and that’s the greatest present your Momma and Daddy could have given you. So take pleasure in the trappings of Christmas. Be merry like the songs say. Revel in the tinsel and the glitter and the sparkle and sing the old songs for all the joy that’s in them and the memories they bring back. But to touch the real Christmas, to feel the true spirit of the season, look to your own heart and find all the secret treasures that they’re there to give. There is one wish that I make every year. I never said it aloud before, but I’ll tell it to you now. I wish for all the seasons I have known, endlessly to come and go; the dogwood Spring, the watermelon Summer, the russet and gold of Autumn. I wish for Christmas to come again and for each of us to be here again next year at this time...together, safe, warm and loved as we are at this moment.

-- Blue Ridge Publications

If perchance you get a chance to hear This piece spoken by Will Geer, do so. It adds another level to this piognant message.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for posting that, Rel. What a beautiful piece of writing, especially when I can hear Will Geer's voice reciting it in my head. :)

I grew up watching The Waltons and it was easily my favourite show at the time. Life stopped when it came on TV and my whole family gathered around to watch it. Being the same age as some of the children, and living in the country where life was still pretty simple, even in the 1970s, I could so relate to them. Thanks for bringing back some very pleasant memories. :)

8:42 AM  
Blogger DellaB said...

My thanks too Rel, for the memories of The Waltons - I was raising my own children through some of those years so we lived with them too.

Just having a read around and clicked over from your comment on Robyn's page.


11:22 AM  
Blogger Churlita said...

Man, now you've got me thinking about The Waltons. I think I need to run right out and rent The Homecoming.

2:05 PM  
Blogger Catch said...

What a lovely message that was. I remember the know, I would give up microwaves, automatic washers and dryers, and go back to a time like that. Things seemed so much more meaningful back then. Most people all had a goodness in their hearts. It must have been a wonderful time to live.

2:39 PM  
Blogger paris parfait said...

Thanks for the reminder of the great series, with this wonderful message.

6:07 PM  
Blogger Carole Burant said...

The Waltons was a show I never missed...between that and Little House on the Prairie, I had all the wholesomeness I wanted! lol Loved Will Geer's narration, as I mentioned in yesterday's comment, my mom had the album and I would listen ot it over and over again!

12:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For as long as I can remember, my family has played Grandpa Walton's Christmas Wish at the dinner table in lieu of the "blessing" every Christmas. It always brings a tear to most people's eyes. This year, even my husband's 21 year old cousin got choked up and now wants a copy of the "wish" to pass on to his friends and future family.

8:59 PM  

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