A Pickthall Triptych

TTB a cappella
10 mins total
-Thoughts – Marjorie Pickthall
-Song – Marjorie Pickthall
-Stars – Marjorie Pickthall
Sulasol (Finland)

Purchase (sheetmusic plus)

Commissioned by the Canadian Men’s Chorus (Toronto). Email me for a score excerpt. Marjorie Pickthall was a British born- Canadian poet. She lived in Toronto and died in Vancouver.


I gave my thoughts a golden peach,
A silver citron tree;
They clustered dumbly out of reach
And would not sing for me.
I built my thoughts a roof of rush,
A little byre beside;
They left my music to the thrush
And flew at eveningtide.
I went my way and would not care
If they should come and go;
A thousand birds seemed up in air,
My thoughts were singing so.
I shall not go with pain
Whether you hold me, whether you forget
My little loss and my immortal gain.
O flower unseen, O fountain sealed apart!
Give me one look, one look remembering yet,
Sweet heart.
I shall not go with grief,
Whether you call me, whether you deny
The crowning vintage and the golden sheaf.
O, April hopes that blossom but to close!
Give me one look, one look and so good-bye,
Red rose.
I shall not go with sighs,
But as full-crowned the warrior leaves the fight,
Dawn on his shield and death upon his eyes.
O, life so bitter-sweet and heaven so far!
Give me one look, one look and so good night,
My star.
Now in the West the slender moon lies low,
And now Orion glimmers through the trees,
Clearing the earth with even pace and slow,
And now the stately-moving Pleiades,
In that soft infinite darkness overhead
Hang jewel-wise upon a silver thread.
And all the lonelier stars that have their place,
Calm lamps within the distant southern sky,
And planet-dust upon the edge of space,
Look down upon the fretful world, and I
Look up to outer vastness unafraid
And see the stars which sang when earth was made.



Themes: space, men’s choir, love, nature, life, healing, prayer, water, stars, journey, longing


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