Two Were Bound For Emmaus

I’ve been an admirer of Bob Hurd for almost forty years. I’d like to meet the guy someday and talk theological shop.

I had a dream two mornings ago that I was playing “Two Were Bound For Emmaus.” I was in a small chapel, and in the middle of a pew. Social distancing was not in effect; I had people to the left and right of me, and in rows behind and ahead. While playing, I was noticing the superb acoustics when I played the F-major chord. The bass note sounded really rich.

Easter got programmed shortly after Christmas, and this hymn is largely a no-brainer for the Easter season, any and all cycles. I didn’t give my psalmist any choice today–it was entrance. She did get to choose the close-out.

I was in the empty church yesterday afternoon. I’d been feeling less than good about my playing the past few weekends. I know all the songs, of course. That is the problem–I get cocky about it. I decided I had hours in the afternoon to revisit the Mass parts, the psalm, and the two hymns. I didn’t play guitar on this one–I do like the piano much better for it.

I sang along, and the first line caught in my throat, “Two were bound for Emmaus, disheartened and lost.” I thought tears would be a distraction during today’s livestream. Good thing I was getting them out of the way.

See the source image

The Emmaus image wasn’t the strongest in my mind’s eye. When I recovered sufficiently, I remembered this painting, above, that clicks with Dr Hurd’s second verse. I remembered the rising plume of smoke from the roasting fish. The original seems missing from the web, and the sites that use it don’t seem to give the artist’s name or source. (If any sleuth can find it, I will credit. Or remove it if asked.)

What is our balm for being disheartened? I’m finding the connection to my affect has strengthened in the past week or two. Lament, worry, and being touched with tears as well as angry words has been with me. I need the music, and the art. Hopefully you readers are finding what you need.

Any observations to add from out there?

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in Commentary, Easter, Liturgical Music, spirituality and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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