My Favorite new Phrase

Since I had a double dose of nation-birfday celebrations this week (see here and here), I was looking into the background of the Canadian National Anthem. There was a debate recently in the Globe and Mail whether the word God should be kept in the anthem. The wiki on the song is here. It’s originally French (and therefore much more explicitly Catholic Christian with a reference to lifting swords and the cross!!!) and then an English version was penned in 1908. Not a translation of the French text. The original English version didn’t have God in it, then God was later added (by the “secular” PM Pierre Trudeau). If you read the lone dissenting voice (for exclusion of God from the song), he’s a pretty raging secularist pomo, so doesn’t help his case too much. The others make points that the majority of the population believes in God in a non-specific/non-confessional manner, so it’s not a really big deal (the French version probably deserves a tweaking).

Anyway, so I’m reading through the history and there are a few extra stanzas that are never really sung. And then this from the second stanza:

O Canada! Where pines and maples grow,
Great prairies spread and Lordly rivers flow!
How dear to us thy broad domain,
From East to Western sea!
The land of hope for all who toil,
The true North strong and free!
God keep our land, glorious and free.
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee!

Now the “where pines and maples” is quaint and cutely Canadian. But “Lordly Rivers Flow.” How fantastic is that–it just rolls right off the tongue. So Lordly Rivers Flow has officially become my new favorite thing to say.

Here is a photo of one of said lordly rivers (the Columbia in BC):

Update I: Is the “true” in true North a shot at Vikings/Scandinavians?  Waddup wit dat?

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Published in: on July 5, 2008 at 8:51 am  Leave a Comment  
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