We were looking for a parking space at Costco the other day and the radio was playing the Hallelujah song. I don’t know who was singing it this time, although it reminded me of hearing Jordan singing it at O’Shea’s on Cape Cod, and it reminded me about anthems.
What turns a piece of music from a song into an anthem? And I’m not talking about national, which is an assigned status. I’m talking about the songs that become anthems, songs that are chosen by the people and become symbols for a generation or generations.
These are off the top of my head. I thought of others and then took them off the list, and I’m probably missing the obvious–the anthem elephant in the room. What are some others?
If music makes up a soundtrack for our lives and a door to our memories, associations with when we heard a song before, an anthem gives us a common soundtrack by
Telling a shared story
Giving us hope
Giving us a really good refrain
An anthem includes us.
What poems do this? Give us this common touchstone?
The two that come to my mind first:
Again, I’m probably missing the obvious ones. What anthem poems do you recommend? I hope you’ll add to the list here.