It’s interesting to look at the search terms people use to find my blog. The three most popular are “Cars the movie,” “Cow killer wasp,” and “Orion is a-rising.”
Several months ago, I made reference to a song I’d learned in sixth grade that went:
Orion is a-rising
You can see his stars a-blazing
In the middle of a clear-eyed country sky
And it’s never too surprising
That the sky is still amazing
Way out here where nothing hides it from my eyes
And sleeping outside in a bag as a kid
It seems like the best thing that I ever did
And chasing the shadows and the tracks in the snow
Don’t you know?
The moon is on the wane
And it looks like it might rain
Or maybe snow
And how are we to stay here
If there’s no room left to play here
Or to grow? Don’t you know? Don’t you know?
Several people have posted questions and comments about the song, but nobody seems to know who wrote it, who originally sang it, or where to find the sheet music for it.
I e-mailed my junior-high science fair partner, who has been one of my dearest friends for more years than either of us is likely to own up to, and whose mom happens to be a music teacher. I’m hoping she’ll be able to track down the book that had the song in it and shed some light on the subject for us.
If not, ASCAP has an online database containing song titles and publication information. No lyrics, but I may just take some comp time one of these afternoons and start calling the phone numbers listed for the publisher of each “Orion” on the list and see if I can track down the information that way.
Search engines turn up a few references to the song — always in blogs or listservs, and always with the same theme: “I remember singing this great little folk song when I was a kid. Does anybody know how it goes or where to find the music?”
It seems to be the great mystery of my generation. If I can solve it, I expect my blog stats will go through the roof.
The bad news is that I still haven’t tracked down the song. The good news is that while I was searching for it, I came across a different song with the same title by an artist named Gary Moon.
I liked the song — and Moon’s voice, which sounds a LOT like James Taylor’s — so much that I went ahead and downloaded it even though it’s not the Orion I was looking for.
Meanwhile, I’ll continue to search for the real thing. Stay tuned….
UPDATE: The composer has surfaced. Please click here to read what he has to say or to find out how to contact him.
UPDATE 2: Click here to hear the song.