The Hushed House
SATB, a cappella (divisi)
Commissioned by the Young New Yorkers' Chorus; Michael Kerschner, Conductor
"I, who went at nightfall, came again at dawn;
On Love's door again I knocked. Love was gone.
One who oft had bade me in, now would bid no more;
Silence sat within the house; barred its door.
When the slow door opened wide through it I could see
How the emptiness within stared at me.
Through the dreary chambers, long I sought and sighed,
But no answering footstep came; naught replied.
Then at last I entered, dim, a darkened room:
There a taper glimmered gray in the gloom.
And I saw one lying crowned with helichrys;
Never saw I face as fair as was theirs.
Like a wintry lily was their brow in hue;
And their cheeks were each a rose, wintry too.
Then my soul remembered all that made us part,
And what I had laughed at once broke my heart."
-Text by Madison Julius Cawein (1865 - 1914)