(For Concert Band and SATB Choir)
About the Music
This piece was inspired by the hauntingly-beautiful lyric poem, "Echo," by Christina Rossetti, in which the narrator begs her dead lover to come back to make her life meaningful again. The music is meant to replicate the feelings of utter devastation and heartbreak portrayed throughout the poem. There are moments of nostalgia - brief glimpses of what could have been - followed by the realization that those glimpses are simply fantasies, and the memories are all that will remain of the narrator's lover...
While I only included text from the first verse, the entire poem is included below:
Come to me in the silence of the night;
Come in the speaking silence of a dream;
Come with soft rounded cheeks and eyes as bright
As sunlight on a stream;
Come back in tears,
O memory, hope, love of finished years.
Oh dream how sweet, too sweet, too bitter sweet,
Whose wakening should have been in Paradise,
Where souls brimfull of love abide and meet;
Where thirsting longing eyes
Watch the slow door
That opening, letting in, lets out no more.
Yet come to me in dreams, that I may live
My very life again tho' cold in death:
Come back to me in dreams, that I may give
Pulse for pulse, breath for breath:
Speak low, lean low,
As long ago, my love, how long ago.