Derek Pashupa Goodwin
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Yoga Blog

Writings on yoga, shamanism & life by Derek Pashupa Goodwin, yogi, photographer, vegan, and ukulele provocatuer.

Will the Circle Be Unbroken (for Sheila Hyslop)

Sheila Hyslop working on a rainy day at Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary

Sheila Hyslop was the animal caretaker at the Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary. She worked tirelessly and selflessly to care for the animals, and was one of the truly saintly people I have known in this lifetime. Earlier this year she left her body, and left a community of animals and people who fight for their rights in mourning. Today we are celebrating her life at the sanctuary. I woke up and rewrote the lyrics to this classic hymn to honor her, and will lead a singing of it during the remembrance.

Will the Circle Be Unbroken (for Sheila Hyslop)

I was standing by the window
On one cold and cloudy day
When I heard the news around me
That death had carried you away

(Chorus)
Will the circle be unbroken
Bye and bye Lord, bye and bye
There’s a better home awaiting
In the sky Lord, in the sky

We all posted it on Facebook
Shared the photographs and pain
There are some people in the world so sweet
Their love changes everything

(Repeat Chorus)

We all follow close behind her
Try to hold up and be brave
This whole life is just a mystery
From the cradle to the grave

(Repeat Chorus)

We now gather where her heart is
With the animals she loves
All my brothers and sisters crying
While she holds us from above

(Repeat Chorus)

Let us sing for her together
Let the singing make us strong
Wherever humans can find harmony
There the angels sing along

(Repeat Chorus)

Sheila Hyslop in an unguarded moment at Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary. She did not like being photographed, and so I honored her space most of the time. In looking back through my thousands of photos on the farm, she is mostly absent. So we hole her instead in our hearts.