Tonight’s the night to sing “Auld Lang Syne!” It is always sung in holiday movies, in Times Square, on popular TV shows, and many times at New Year’s gatherings. But what does it mean? I did a little research and found this on www.Scotland.org.
In sentimental American movies, Robert Burns’ Auld Lang Syne is sung by crowds at the big New Year finale. In Bangkok and Beijing it is so ubiquitous as a song of togetherness and sad farewells, they presume it must be an old Thai or Chinese folk song; while in France it is the song which eases the pain of parting with the hope that we will all see each other again – Oui, nous nous reverrons, mes frères, ce n’est qu’un au revoir. Auld Lang Syne is one of Scotland’s gifts to the world, recalling the love and kindness of days gone by, but in the communion of taking our neighbours’ hands, it also gives us a sense of belonging and fellowship to take into the future.
It is one of the many folk songs from the great Lowland Scots tradition collected and fashioned by the pen of one of the world’s greatest songwriters. Burns devoted the last years of his life to the song tradition, and often a mere fragment from some old ballad was transformed by his alchemy into a memorable love song or Scots poem.
Let us tonight think of the people that are dearest to us and give thanks for them. We belong to each other and have a bond of friendship that will take us into the next year.
Happy New Year to you, my friends. You enrich my life with your e-mails and comments on this blog. I hope 2016 will be a very special year for you.