Us For Now (A Sort of Fairy Tale)

This was one of those weeks (Week 4 #songaweek2022) when I used the prompt (“we win”) and it actually helped me get started on the song (thus the whole first verse with soldiers and a battle).

Playing with the wording of classic fairy tale beginning and ending phrases (“once in a while upon a time” and “happily ever after it all”) led me to write the whole song with a fairy tale kind of feel to it.

The first line of the parting couplet came to me in the middle of the night and felt right for this song (“that moment between letting go and hitting the ground”).

One thought, after I had already posted the song – I would change the wording in the last chorus to “this isn’t a story for you to tell on your own.” I noticed that there’s interior rhyme in the other two choruses (“this isn’t a BATtle you HAVE to worry about” and “this isn’t a SEcret you NEED to keep to yourself”) – so I wanted it in the last one too (“this isn’t a STORy FOR you . . . “). Which interestingly enough was my first draft of that line anyway. Hats off to the subconscious!

Oh, also I went with this “comic mono” filter in iMovie to add to the fairy tale feel. Not always a fan of the comic filters but it felt right here.

Once in a while upon a time
Brave little soldiers stand in a line
Armed to the teeth, hearts in their throats
Earth’s firm enigma under their boots

This isn’t a battle you have to worry about
We’re all on the same side and we win

Small ones are sleeping deep in the woods
Tall trees are dreaming over their heads
Fungus is feeding on all we forgot
Water is reaching slowly through rock

This isn’t a secret you need to keep to yourself
We’re all on the outside looking in

Now is the moment, here is the place
True is the smile creasing my face
I’ve struggled and suffered and still I recall
Happily ever after it all

This isn’t a story that you must [for you to] tell on your own
We’re all here deciding how it ends

That moment between letting go and hitting the ground
That’s what we call life, that’s us for now


  1. Oh my! This one really got me… such hope amidst bad news all around; such purpose amidst feeling lost as one person in a sea of humanity; such big perspective amidst isolated feelings of ineffectiveness; such rich humanity amidst impersonal causes; such realized fulfillment amidst struggled success. The song lifts me out of struggles, isolation, myopia, into purpose, community, vision.

    • Thanks Dad, glad it was encouraging for you. Connectedness, reaching beyond my own personal world – these are definitely important and influential themes for me these days (partially inspired by the 2022 theme “Nothing stands alone” from the daily meditations I read from Richard Rohr).

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