Why does the willow weep?
What secrets does she keep? –Ruth Elaine Schram
As I thought about a photograph for this week’s Thursday Tree Love, the weeping willow I captured five years ago [while roaming the neighborhood] insisted on my taking note of its character. Though the tree seems weak with its weepy, leafy branches, it is actually flexible and strong.
Considering the last several months–point taken.
I have a writing deadline to meet [eek!] and [therefore] no time for a longer post. Instead, I’ll leave you with “Interesting Facts About Weeping Willow Trees” and my favorite [and totally awesome] willow songs–Billie Holiday’s bluesy “Willow, Weep for Me” and Ruth Elaine Schram’s wistful “Why Does the Willow Weep?”
Today’s post was written by Takiyah Franklin/Takiyah Suhail, whom I usually refer to as “My Tk.” Takiyah is a former student, mentee, and research assistant with whom I’ve always shared a spiritual kinship. During her undergraduate years we ministered together–she through song, I through biblical teachings. Over the 10+ years since she graduated, our relationship has evolved and I consider her a spiritual sister. In January, I posted about Takiyah’s single, “My New Song,” which was inspired by the words of Howard Thurman, one of my favorite theologians. Today, Takiyah, talks about the song, shares the recently released video, a little about herself, her music, and her faith journey.
*** *** ***
Takiyah Suhail aka Takiyah Franklin. Photo Credit: Denna Bendall
I am excited to introduce myself and share “My New Song,” my recent single release. I am a singer/songwriter from Oakland, California and I have the pleasure of working with Rev. Andriette Earl, the founding minister of an amazing spiritual community, Heart and Soul Center of Light, a world-class teaching and empowerment ministry located in Oakland, CA.
Theologian Howard Thurman’s essay entitled “I Will Sing a New Song” inspired Rev. Earl and Erika Luckett, a renowned Emmy Award winning singer/songwriter, to write “My New Song.”
Here’s an excerpt from Thurman’s essay:
The old song of my spirit has wearied itself out. It has long ago been learned by heart so that now it repeats itself over and over, bringing no added joy to my days or lift to my spirit. It is a good song, measured to a rhythm to which I am bound by ties of habit and timidity of mind. The words belong to old experiences which once sprang fresh as water from a mountain crevice fed by melting snows. But my life has passed beyond to other levels where the old songs are meaningless. I demand of the old song that it meet the need of present urgencies. Also, I know that the work of the old song, perfect in its place, is not for the new demand!
I am blessed to have been chosen to deliver such an incredible life-shifting and affirmative song.
You can listen to “My New Song” and/or watch the music video on my website, Takiyah. Feel free to post the YouTube link for the music video everywhere: (https://youtu.be/m-hK_kvP010). The song is also available for purchase on all digital distribution music outlets: Search Takiyah “My New Song.”
I am a radical advocate of the transformative power of Love and it is my intention to use my music to encourage the conscious spiritual practice of being a Love Light. When I allowed the healing, transformative power of God’s Love to lead, guide, and direct my life, everything outside of Love steadily faded away. This is not an easy practice: it is radical and requires a lot of internal work.
I invite you to listen to my latest EP, Unfolding I Affirm, a brief collection of songs born out of breakthroughs of practicing faith through my life’s most difficult times. In my lowest points of being alone and raising three beautiful children, my faith in the Highest Power guided me to perfect Peace. I’m learning how to live a life filled with joy, love, and peace in the midst of mental and emotional challenges. I want to share my journey with you.
You can find me on Twitter or Instagram @blackstarworld.