Well, I guess it’s time to add a new verse to everybody’s favorite minor-key Primary song, “Follow the Prophet” (#110 in the Children’s Songbook) because I just noticed (I’m behind the times on this, given that there are almost 77,000 followers) that President Monson has his very own official Twitter account. So the phrase “follow the prophet” now takes on new meaning given that one can “follow” someone else’s Twitter account.
As an aside, now that I’m looking at the lyrics to “Follow the Prophet”, I’m amused by the line in verse 9 that says “If you don’t believe it, go and watch the news.” Like Primary children would even be encouraged by their parents to watch the news on TV, whether it be Fox, CNN or MSNBC.
Anyway, I’m going to attempt to add a new verse, right now, off the top of my head, that would be in keeping with the style (but this will probably be a bit of a stretch) and meter of the other 9 verses we already have.
With the exception of verse 4, all of the verses begin with “[two-syllable name] was a prophet”. Verse 4 is different because “Abraham”, having 3 syllables, throws off the whole rhythm. Fortunately, President Monson has a two-syllable first name, so that pretty much forces us to start off with
Thomas was a prophet,
Or, we could conceivably go with
Tommy was a prophet,
If one searches the Church website for General Conference talks where President Monson refers back to incidents in his youth, he often has other people referring to him as “Tommy”. I admit it does seem a bit familiar to be referring to the Prophet of the Lord as “Tommy”, but we have no problem in the rest of the song being on a first-name basis with the prophets of the Old Testament, so… why not? And since this song is, after all, a Primary song, I think “Tommy” is just slightly better-sounding on the ear for Primary-aged children, lyric-wise, than “Thomas”.
Let’s keep going. Since all of the other prophets mentioned in the song are, in fact, OT prophets, we can finish the first line by emphasizing how we’ve moved on from the OT and we’re now dealing with a 21st century prophet.
Tommy was a prophet in the latter days,
Sounds OK so far; we just need to remember the end of the second line is going to need to rhyme with “days”, which doesn’t strike me as being a difficult thing to do, but we should probably leave ourselves open to the idea of changing it to “day”; the phrase “latter days” already does show up at the end of the first verse, so we’re probably in good stead by sticking with the plural, but going with the singular would probably be OK as well.
So now we need to pick out a defining attribute about President Monson that distinguishes him from every other latter-day prophet. We already know that he has his own official Twitter account, which is kind of the whole point of this effort, so what can we do with that?
Here’s where a rhyming dictionary comes in handy. Let’s Google “words that rhyme with days” and see what comes up.
The first link points us to www.rhymezone.com, so let’s see what they’ve come up with.
Well, I can see how “Rutherford B. Hayes” might fit nicely at the end of the second line and actually matches the rhythm of that part of the song, but… no.
Other words that seem like an obvious good match are, “prays”, “rays” (thinking “Jesus Wants Me For a Sunbeam” here), “praise”, “obeys”, “ways”, “stays”, “strays” and maybe even “yeas”.
I’m sure we could have even more fun with “buffets”, “filets”, “craze” or “daze”, but… no.
Maybe we should go back to using “day” at the end of the first line. Back to the rhyming dictionary… oh, if only we could find some excuse for using “Jean Baptiste Pierre (rest) Antoine de Monet” in there somehow; it would take up one whole line! But… no.
“Digital display”… hmmm. And what the heck is a “quaigh”? Besides rhyming with “day”, we find out that it’s variant of “quaich”, which is a Scottish word for “a small shallow drinking vessel with ears for use as handles”. Since President Monson has on at least one occasion related a story about his ability to wiggle his ears, this could conceivably be worked in somehow, but… no. (However, throwing in a Scottish word like quaigh would certainly be a nod to President McKay, right?)
All right, let’s get serious here. How about:
Tommy was a prophet in the latter day,
Preaching the commandments, asked us to obey.
That’s not too bad. Now we should throw in something from his history, although we still haven’t done anything about the Twitter thing. OK, I can see I need to finish this off.
Follow him on Twitter or lds-dot-org,
Oh, that’s probably a dead end; what rhymes with “org”? Besides “borg”, I mean? “Morgue”? Nope. Definitely nope.
Tommy was a prophet in the latter day,
Preaching the commandments, asked us to obey;
His Tweets on Twitter tell us all about God’s plan
To sanctify His children and share God’s joy with man.
Well, there you go: a new verse 9 to “Follow the Prophet”. The existing verse 9 would become verse 10.
Oh, well. Now we know why I don’t write lyrics to hymns. If you can do better than this (and you probably can), put your own verse here. I triple-dog dare ya.