Countdown to Kianna: Lullabye

Countdown to Kianna: 38, 37, 36 days …

I got fired from my job as editor of my hometown newspaper, The Belle Banner, just a few days after Kishia was born in 1985. It was a blessing in disguise, though, because a week before she turned 2-months-old, the Gasconade County Republican in Owensville hired me as sports editor. I quit college before earning a degree, but the education I got in seven years at The Republican was phenomenal.

Kelly was a stay-at-home mom for a couple of years and Kishia was the center of our universe. This morning when Kishia stopped by to print off an online gift certificate for a baby shower she was headed to, I kissed the top of her head. I didn’t linger, so my tears didn’t fall on her hair. But that scent and the obvious sign of her being eight months pregnant simply flooded my entire being with emotion.

My little girl, my first-born, just a few weeks (maybe days?) away from delivering her first-born, her little girl: Kianna. Our first grandchild. I honestly don’t think about anything else right now.

And I think back to the evenings when I came home from The Republican, sometimes to leave again to go cover a football, basketball or volleyball game. I always tried to get bath-time duties to sign with, wash and talk to beautiful little Kishia. She grew up fast — way too fast — and was 6 months old when our little dog, Buffy, playfully nipped her. Kishia was astonished and announced, “Buppy bit me.”

Talking at 6 months old. And she never crawled. In fact, her first steps, at 9 months, were more like first sprints. She was a fun, fun and expressive baby/toddler.

My play time and dad time was in the evening, with bath time, more play time and a wonderful bedtime ritual that had locks of rocking in the Bentwood rocker, reading (very fond of Dr. Seuss) and then lights out and our song. Sometimes there were deviations in the bedtime ritual — maybe a different book, and eventually a bedside prayer — but the song was the same. Always.

Don Francisco’s “Lullabye.” Don Francisco’s music is probably not at the top of the list for most people, but it has resonated in my heart and lifted my spirit for years. He takes Bible stories — many of them obscure or certainly not as popular as most — and turns them into ballads that can pierce or comfort the coldest of hearts. His songs are arrows of grace that are real, not preachy.

“Lullabye” is short and simple, and something even a toddler can sing. Here are the lyrics.

(You Tube audio here: http://youtu.be/238jV2AzWxM)

Lullabye, by Don Francisco …

Darkness covers all the land — sounds of day are gone;
But love is all around you now and will be ’till the dawn.

Stars shine on the window sill, the moon shines through the trees;
Angels by your bed tonight — shine where no one sees.

So there’s no need to be afraid — all the whole night through.
‘Cause God has made a promise child, that He’ll take care of you.

Stars shine on the window sill, the moon shines through the trees;
Angels by your bed tonight — shine where no one sees.

All that you’ve been dreamin’ of — awaits you when you rise;
So with the peace that Jesus brings — close your sleepy eyes.

Stars shine on the window sill, the moon shines through the trees;
Angels by your bed tonight — shine where no one sees.

All that you’ve been dreamin’ of — awaits you when you rise;
So with the peace that Jesus brings — close your sleepy eyes.

There you have it.

If I live a thousand years I’ll never forget the best way for that song to end: Before the final line began, with the house full of peace and quiet, Kishia raised her head from my chest and looked into my eyes, her bed-time breath the sweetest scent ever created. And we’d sing the final line — maybe in total darkness, maybe with star light on our faces — and look into each others’ eyes.

“So with the peace that Jesus brings, close your sleepy eyes.” Before the final note disappeared into the night, Kishia added, “Love you Daddy,” still looking into my eyes.

I’d ask you to pardon my tears right now, but I think you understand a little better now.

Grandpa’s message to Kianna, #3:

If I ever manage to wrestle you out of your mom and dad’s arms, I’ll do my best to send you off to sleep with “Lullabye.” Maybe you’ll learn it, too?

In the meantime, I’ll change the words just a bit, and it won’t rhyme, but here goes, my sweet Kianna:

“All that you are dreamin’ of … awaits you when you’re born;
So with the peace that Jesus brings … close your sleepy eyes.”

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3 Comments

Filed under A reporter's life, Kianna Allene Brown

3 responses to “Countdown to Kianna: Lullabye

  1. Kishia

    I thought you wrote that song. lol…

  2. Lora

    My dad played this song when I was young, too. I hadn’t thought of it in years, but now that I see the words, I remember it exactly.

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