Oh dear. Do try to restrain yourselves out there.
However, in a week that has elected a new Pope, perhaps we should turn our thoughts to another consensual activity between adults: singing.
To my mind, there is nothing quite so emotionally charged as the joyful joining together of voices, be it in choirs, pubs, or even barber shops.
Personally, I love to sing, although I don’t very often, for fear of frightening the horses.
It’s not that I sing out of tune, although the fact that I do has been used against me on many occasions.
No, I think my reluctance to sing – even in the shower – stems more from the fact that, being tall, my voice tends to emanate from on high, and at full volume I can out-muscle a boom box.
In a guest blog interview I was recently asked to name my favourite song. That was easy. Jerusalem.
The music is by Sir Hubert Parry, written in 1916. But the words – those magnificent words – were written by William Blake in 1804. Listen. Do you hear what I hear?
And did those feet in ancient time,
Walk upon Englands mountains green:
And was the holy Lamb of God,
On Englands pleasant pastures seen!
The poem, according to Wikipedia, was inspired by the apocryphal story that a young Jesus , accompanied by his uncle Joseph of Arimathea, a tin merchant, travelled to England and visited Glastonbury during Jesus’ lost years.
Hence the building of a new Jerusalem “among these dark Satanic mills.”
At this time point in the hymn I am at full voice and don’t spare the horses! But it’s the next verse that makes the hairs on my neck stand up.
Bring me my Bow of burning gold;
Bring me my Arrows of desire:
Bring me my Spear: O clouds unfold!
Bring me my Chariot of fire!
I don’t think I have ever sung that bit because my eyes are filled with tears.