Tragedy and the Healing words of Sting

Andy Magee

These days, when I hug my children at night I know I hold them tighter, longer and with a depth of feeling that is so profound, I almost cry. I thought I was a poet, a writer - one who could wield and arrange words to reflect what I feel adequately at least.  I could make people feel compassion and nostalgia. Love and hatred. Equally.

But I could not. Not this week.

Neither could Obama.

For words failed us this time around to comprehend the tragedy and horror that beheld a small town half a world away. How the lives of little angels were cruelly cut short.

Children of America. Children of Gaza.
Children of Myanmar. Children of the world wherever you are
who die of man created violence.

Words failed me.

So I turned to Sting.

And nothing brought this closer to heart and reminded me  how fragile we really are as this simple short song did.

If blood will flow when flesh and steel are one
Drying in the colour of the evening sun
Tomorrow's rain will wash the stains away
But something in our minds will always stay
Perhaps this final act was meant
To clinch a lifetime's argument
That nothing comes from violence and nothing ever could
For all those born beneath an angry star
Lest we forget how fragile we are

On and on the rain will fall
Like tears from a star like tears from a star
On and on the rain will say
How fragile we are how fragile we are

Lloras tu
y lloro yo
y el cielo también
y el cielo también
Lloras tú
y lloro yo
que fragilidad
que fragilidad...

Life is really fragile. Therefore, guns and wars really have no place in our civilian society, do they?

There is no historical precedent
To put the words in the mouth of the President
There's no such thing as a winnable war
It's a lie we don't believe anymore

We share the same biology
Regardless of ideology
What might save us, me, and you
Is if 'we all' love 'our' children too

We try to make sense. But it will never make sense. Deep in our hearts, we do not stop crying.

Would I cry for you

Under the Arctic fire
Over the seas of silence
Hauling on frozen ropes
For all my days remaining
But would north be true?

All colours bleed to red
Asleep on the ocean's bed
Drifting on empty seas
For all my days remaining

But would north be true?
Why should I?
Why should I cry for you?

To try and understand the evil in the world, I try to remember that everyone had a family, a childhood, a love lost and maybe never found. There is a story. A tragedy that begets tragedy.
He deals the cards as a meditation
And those he plays never suspect

He may play the jack of diamonds
He may lay the queen of spades
He may conceal a king in his hand
While the memory of it fades

I know that the spades are the swords of a soldier
 know that the clubs are weapons of war
I know that diamonds mean money for this art

But that's not the shape of my heart
That's not the shape, the shape of my heart

The siege guns had been pounding all through the night

And if I built this fortress around your heart
Encircled you in trenches and barbed wire
Then let me build a bridge
For I cannot fill the chasm
And let me set the battlements on fire

Finally, when I can't take all this sadness and need to think of love again, I turn to Sting's 

Though all my kingdoms turn to sand
And fall into the sea
I'm mad about you I'm mad about you

And from the dark secluded valleys
I heard the ancient sighs of sadness
But every step I thought of you

Every footstep only you
And every star a grain of sand
The leavings of a dried up ocean

Tell me, how much longer? How much longer?

Until you love with that kind of ache and longing, perhaps you have not loved enough?
And yet,  while half the world panics and the other half wonders about destruction on 21.12.12 - what is the new wave to hit Mankind? Sting sang of the seventh wave, bringing real hope in his words.
Every ripple on the ocean
Every leaf on every tree
Every sand dune in the desert
Every power we never see
There is a deeper wave than this
Swelling in the world
There is a deeper wave than this
Listen to me girl

Feel it rising in the cities
Feel it sweeping over land
Over borders, over frontiers
Nothing will its power withstand
There is no deeper wave than this
Rising in the world
There is no deeper wave than this
Listen to me girl

All the bloodshed, all the anger
All the weapons, all the greed
All the armies, all the missiles
All the symbols of our fear

There is a deeper wave than this
Rising in the world
There is a deeper wave than this
Listen to me girl

The man is a genius. Thank you Sting.

Songs and lyrics by Sting
Last line in Russian, slightly amended to reflect the tragedy faced by all of us...


  1. It is deeply saddening to see children becoming victims of ruthless and heartless crimes and violence. It is also saddening to see children begging on the streets when they should be in school.

    The lyrics are very well written. I love these two lines; "There's no such thing as a winnable war, It's a lie we don't believe anymore."

    1. Sting is one of my favourite artiste of all time. His lyrics are so profound - makes you think.

  2. Thank you for sharing the wonderful lyrics of Sting.

    1. He is a writer I greatly admire. Thanks Kerry!

  3. It is timely to share these and reveal how we must change~ Thank you for sharing! I know some of these and others I do not~ What a talent, he truly is. I didn't know he was so poetic~
    It is so sad, to see what we have become...

    1. Dear Ella,
      I have decided today is a day for reflection for me. And I believe the time is right for us to treasure and fight for humanity and the humane.

      Sting is indeed poetic and his songs reveal that he is a voracious reader.

  4. Ninot, I read this yesterday and again today. Truly, the global consciousness is having trouble grappling with this latest trauma to its psyche. I love Sting's song "how fragile we are" words, kiddo. They fail me, too.

    1. Alas, Sherry...before long, the world will forget. Or the memory of it dims. The victims' survivors become angry and then...the cycle goes on?

      I refuse to believe that. We can and will be better than that.


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