A few years ago I wrote a lyric that my friend Brad Ford helped me turn it into a song. I was thinking of home, the Florida Gulf Coast, city of five flags and of its diverse history.
“The home of my heart is on these white sands , where the north shore laps against this southern land. Santa Rosa breezes are always freeing me from the chains I feel but cannot see….I’m just a Gumbo Child, rollin’ flowin’ with the tides, waves rollin’ in and they subside. With the pull of my soul and another ride…for the Gumbo Child”.
The people make up this land. It is always that way. Here, Native Americans, English, Spanish and French were the ealry ones, and now it’s a big pot of good tastin’ Gumbo ! I suppose most places in the good ole US of A could lay claim to that. Pensacola seems even more so with a longer history (Americas first settlement by the way), with it’s ethenic blends, Pentecostal roots mixed with tourism, Armed Service folks, rednecks, laid back beach lovers and just about anyone else that wanders down to our beaches and never leaves ! Who could blame them. I wasn’t the first one there and so I can’t say who gets to be the last.
“Cowboy hats and old surfboards, Crawfish boils and half ton Fords. Marley music ain’t no surprise under a full moon Hank Williams sky….Just a Gumbo Child, goin’, flowin’ with the tides, waves rollin’ in and they subside. With the pull of my soul and another ride…for the Gumbo Child” !
Isn’t the diversity in us as a people and even within our own selves, that makes us interesting? I think so. I love culture, mine as well as anothers. Living and learning about that makes us stronger, not weaker. Makes us unite more and divide less. For how many of us can say we are full blood anything? It’s getting more and more rare these days. And if we are all the children of One Creator, then what difference does it make? Just because we want to learn of and live with other cultures doesn’t mean we have to let go of ours!
Just a Gumbo Child, goin’ , flowin’ with the tides, waves rollin’ in and they subside….with the pull of my soul and another ride… for the Gumbo Child” !!
I think we should all embrace our inner Gumbo, what do ya say? !!