Song adaption of the poem “ I Pray” by Carol Snyder Halberstad,
published in JAMA. 2018;320(19):2044.
©2018 American Medical Association. Used with Permission.

Thanks to Dr. Ward Miles, who brought this beautiful poem to my attention. He had read it in an edition of JAMA. I am grateful for his friendship and honored to know him.

Thanks to the poet Carol Halberstadt for granting permission to put this poem to music. Carol has become a dear friend through many conversations about healing, life, and kindness. Carol has recently published a book of poetry called "Gathering Words: Leaves from a Tree of Life."

Thanks to friend and cellist Tyrrell Sweetman, for her beautifully composed and performed cello line in the recording.

Thanks to Brian Castillo for recording the song, and for his beautiful and sensitive engineering.

Thanks to permissions staff at the Journal of the American Medical Association for allowing us to share this poem and music with the world. I have heard this kind of permission for a composition is rarely, if ever granted. We are deeply appreciative!


I pray
though I do not believe
anything will change.

I pray
hoping that I will heal
though I know the universe is indifferent.

I pray
as I imagine the first living cell
reached out to divide and evolve.

I pray
because I am here
and I know that life seeks to be.

I pray
through the song of the grasses
which is the melody of the heart.


from Random Singles and Custom Songs, track released December 9, 2019
Music written by Elizabeth Hummel, lyrics are from Carol Snyder Halberstad's poem, "I Pray."
Guitar and vocals: Elizabeth
Cello: Tyrrell Sweetman
Engineering: Brian Castillo
Image on track: Hannah Cohoon, Tree of Life or Blazing Tree, 1845


all rights reserved