Barlow Bradford Publishing
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Series: Signature Secular Series
Format: SATB Choral Score
Accompaniment: Piano (Optional "piano only" part available.)
Donald M. Skirvin
Text: Sara Teasdale
Performance time - ca. 12:30

Note: There is a 16-copy minimum for this title.

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Desc.: “Love Songs,” from which the lyrics of this piece are taken, is a collection of poems by the American poet Sara Teasdale. Scored for Soprano soloist, SATB (some divisi), and piano, “Curve of Gold” is a meditation on love’s journey as we seek, find, and sometimes lose our way. That journey is rarely a straight line; it curves, doubles back, leads us through thrilling adventures, and may sometimes break our hearts. “Curve of Gold” explores that path through four vignettes, each representing a stage in this journey. The set opens with the tale of ephemeral love, comparing the eternal cycles of the moon to the brevity of love. The second movement expresses how another’s love transforms even common experience into a shining road to travel together, setting the surroundings “delicately alight.” The third movement contemplates love’s loss, and the memories of kinder times. The final movement describes how we can carry love as a beacon, a lamp, through the darkness as life reaches its journey’s end. The musical language is modern but tonal with rich chordal underpinnings.

I. And I For You (SATB + soloist)
To-Night, from Love Songs, part III
The moon is a curving flower of gold,
The sky is still and blue;
The moon was made for the sky to hold,
And I for you.
The moon is a flower without a stem,
The sky is luminous;
Eternity was made for them,
Tonight for us.

II. Delicately Alight (SATB)
Dew, from Love Songs, part III
As dew leaves the cobweb lightly
Threaded with stars,
Scattering jewels on the fence
And the pasture bars;
As dawn leaves the dry grass bright
And the tangled weeds
Bearing a rainbow gem
On each of their seeds;
So has your love, my lover,
Fresh as the dawn,
Made me a shining road
To travel on,
Set every common sight
Of tree or stone
Delicately alight
For me alone.

III. If I Should See Your Eyes Again (SATB + soloist)
Jewels, from Love Songs, part I
If I should see your eyes again, I know how far their look would go–
Back to a morning in the park
With sapphire shadows on the snow.
Or back to oak trees in the spring
When you unloosed my hair and kissed
The head that lay against your knees
In the leaf shadow’s amethyst.
And still another shining place
We would remember– how the dun
Wild mountain held us on its crest
One diamond morning white with sun.
But I will turn my eyes from you
As women turn to put away
The jewels they have worn at night
And cannot wear in sober day.

IV. A Lamp In Darkness (SATB + soloist)
The Lamp, from Love Songs, part I, and
In a Burying Ground, from Love Songs, part II, Interlude: Songs out of Sorrow

If I can bear your love like a lamp before me,
When I go down the long steep
Road of Darkness,
I shall not fear the everlasting shadows,
Nor cry in terror.
If I can find out God, then I shall find Him,
If none can find Him, then I shall sleep soundly,
Knowing how well on earth your love sufficed me,
A lamp in darkness.

This is the spot where I will lie
When life has had enough of me,
These are the grasses that will blow
Above me like a living sea.
These gay old lilies will not shrink
To draw their life from death of mine,
And I will give my body’s fire
To make blue flowers on this vine.
“O Soul,” I said, “have you no tears?
Was not the body dear to you?”
I heard my soul say carelessly,
“The myrtle flowers will grow more blue.”