Singing Place, The


Lily A. Long (1860-1927)

Lily Long's poem describes that place that some call "between worlds"—between conscious and subconscious awareness. Long calls it "The Singing Place." This setting aims to capture the rapture the poet feels as she is carried away on "lifting waves of sound."  This sensation is that of being both in time and out of time; both rhythmic and floating. "The Singing Place" was commissioned in 2007-2008 by the ACDA Women's Choir Composition Consortium, Debra Spurgeon, National Chair.


Item Voicing/Instrumentation Duration Price Audio View Score Quantity
S-305 SSAA, piano 6:30 $2.50 Earthsongs
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The Singing Place

Cold may lie the day,

And bare of grace;

At night I slip away

To the Singing Place.

A border of mist and doubt

Before the gate,

And the Dancing Stars grow still

As hushed I wait.

Then faint and far away

I catch the beat

In broken rhythm and rhyme

Of joyous feet,—

Lifting waves of sound

That will rise and swell

(If the prying eyes of thought

Break not the spell),

Rise and swell and retreat

And fall and flee,

As over the edge of sleep

They beckon me.

And I wait as the seaweed waits

For the lifting tide;

To ask would be to awake,—

To be denied.

I cloud my eyes in the mist

That veils the hem,—

And then with a rush I am past,-—

I am Theirs,and of Them!

And the pulsing chant swells up

To touch the sky,

And the song is joy,is life,

And the song am I!

The thunderous music peals

Around, o'erhead-

The dead would awake to hear

If there were dead;

But the life of the throbbing Sun

Is in the song,

And we weave the world anew,

And the Singing Throng

Fill every corner of space—-

Over the edge of sleep

I bring but a trace

Of the chants that pulse and sweep

In the Singing Place.


The Singing Place (Szymko)