Peace Like A River

I don’t know where I learned Peace Like a River, but it may have been from Elizabeth Mitchell’s You Are My Little Bird. She certainly has a lovely rendition. The song itself is much older, tracing back to an African American spiritual.

For storytime, I’ve replaced the word “soul” with “heart,” and added a couple qualities that feel more active to me. This disrupts the continuity of water metaphors, but I don’t think the kids will mind. If you’d like to try a few ASL signs instead of strumming, you can pick them up from my friends at Jbrary.

Peace Like A River 
I've got peace like a river
          F            C
I've got peace like a river
I've got peace like a river in my heart
I've got peace like a river
          F            C
I've got peace like a river
                       G7          C
I've got peace like a river in my heart

Love like the ocean...
Joy like a fountain...
Dreams like a forest...
Strength like a mountain...

4 thoughts on “ Peace Like A River

  1. Blast from my childhood that I had forgotten about! When I saw the title, I instantly knew the tune and remembered the first verse (with the word “soul”). Just goes to show that what children are taught at this age does stick with them and is therefore crucial (our everlasting cry as librarians serving those in early childhood!)
    My storytime kids are going to love this (with motions added). Especially the little boy whose favorite superhero is Hulk because he’s STRONG! I know he’ll love the mountain verse.
    You mentioned not keeping with the water theme, but I love how you kept with the nature theme. For me, it sealed the deal on using it in storytime. 😄
    Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

      • For Halloween storytime, I just tried out another verse, “courage like a lion” with the ASL signs for courage and lion. They are fun signs to do.
        I’m going to keep using this verse beyond Halloween because kids need to know they can be brave. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

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