We sing of the lands (Peter Bird)

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  • CPDL #29097:        (Sibelius 5)
Editor: Peter Bird (submitted 2013-05-11).   Score information: Letter, 11 pages, 120 kB   Copyright: CC BY SA
Edition notes: MusicXML source file is in compressed .mxl format.

General Information

Title: We sing of the lands
Composer: Peter Bird

Number of voices: 6vv   Voicing: SSAATB
Genre: SecularLament

Language: English
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 2013

Description: This is a lament for all the beatiful but fragile ecosystems that are being lost, one by one, as the Earth gets more overcrowded and overheated. Renaissance composers showed us that a choral lament can be rich in major chords, dignity, and beauty. Of course, they only added extra diatonic notes to their triad chords as unaccented passing tones or as prepared suspensions. Five centuries later, we use pandiatonic chords more freely, for their ambiguity and subtle beauty, and to improve voice leading. Still, we are much indebted to the first masters. Length 6 minutes.

External websites: http://peterbird.name/choral/

Original text and translations

English.png English text

We sing of the lands that are lost to us,
and the times that may never come again.

Where is the forest of the ancient trees?
Where are the salmon leaping in the streams?
Where are the meadows where the deer ran free?
Where are the lands of our ancestors?

When will the glaciers bloom on the peak?
When will the rivers run down to the sea?
When will the corals bloom on the reef?
Not in our time, nor our children's.

Forgive us, Great Mother.
Have mercy, Great Mother.
Forgive us, Great Mother.
We have lost the way.