Eleven Songs and Two Harmonizations

by Charles Edward Ives (1874 - 1954)

Word count: 1372

1. A Scotch Lullaby [sung text checked 1 time]

Blaw! skirlin' win! raw, tirlin'win'!
Nowt reck we
In the byre the coo's gly an'warm,
By the fire na wink o' storm,
Whaup on the wing,
Snaw on the tree,
Thou wi' me
Thy mithers breast shall be thy rest
Close thy bonnie e'e.
Sleep! Sleep! Sleep! Sleep!
A' shieldit frae harm
Whiles couthie shall guard thee
Mither's arm.
Sleep! Sleep! Sleep! Sleep!
She'll still be near.
Naething shall fley thy rest,
Sae dinna fear
Sleep on thy mither's breast.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller

2. A sea dirge [sung text checked 1 time]

Full fathom five thy father lies,
Of his bones are coral made;
Those are pearls that were his eyes:
Nothing of him that doth fade,
But doth suffer a sea-change
Into something rich and strange.
Sea-nymphs hourly ring his knell:
[Ding-dong.]1
Hark! now I hear them, - ding-dong bell.

Authorship

See other settings of this text.

Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) (Lidy van Noordenburg) , "Vijf vadem diep", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FIN Finnish (Suomi) (Erkki Pullinen) , copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy de Pourtalès)
  • FRE French (Français) (Maurice Bouchor)
  • GER German (Deutsch) [singable] (David Paley) , "Voll Faden fünf", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • IRI Irish (Gaelic) [singable] (Gabriel Rosenstock) , copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "Tuo padre giace a una profondità di cinque tese", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Andrea Maffei) , no title, first published 1869
  • NOR Norwegian (Bokmål) (Arild Bakke) , "På fem favner", copyright © 2004, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

View original text (without footnotes)
1 omitted by Ives.

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

3. Christmas Carol [sung text checked 1 time]

Come away to the manger
Our Lord Christ to see.
Most sweet, fair and holy
Of all babes is he.
Come away, come away
To see the dear child,
Whose face is so tender,
Gentle and mild.

Shepherds come and him worship
As he lies in his bed,
And even fair Mary
Doth bow her sweet head.
Come away, come away
To see the dear child,
Whose face is so tender,
Gentle and mild.

Then in walk the wise men
Our Lordship to see,
With gold, myrrh and incense
And give Christ all three.
Come away, come away
To see the dear child,
Whose face is so tender,
Gentle and mild.

All worship Christ then
In the morning so dim.
We also must kneel
And thank God for him.
Come away, come away
To see the dear child,
Whose face is so tender,
Gentle and mild.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller

4. Far from my heav'nly home [sung text checked 1 time]

Far from my heav'nly home,
Far from my Father's breast,
Fainting I cry, blest Spirit, come,
Blest Spirit, come, blest Spirit, come
And guide me to my rest,
And guide me to my rest.

My spirit homeward turns,
And fain would thither flee;
My heart, O Zion, droops and yearns
When I remember thee.
My heart, O Zion, droops and yearns,
When I remember thee,
My heart, O Zion, droops and yearns,
When I remember thee.

[To thee, to thee I press]1
A dark and toilsome road.
When shall I pass, when shall I pass the wilderness, the wilderness
And reach the saints' abode, and reach the saints' abode?

God of my life, be near:
On Thee my hopes I cast.
O guide me through the desert here
And bring me home at last!
O guide me through the desert here
And brin me home at last!
O guide me thro' the desert here
And bring me home at last.

Authorship

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Ives: "To thee I press"

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller

5. God bless and keep thee [sung text checked 1 time]

I know not if thy love be as a flower
in autumn, and has faded now from me
I know not, if I came now as of yore,
You would greet me
I can but pray:
"God bless and keep thee,
God bless and keep thee,
keep thee, my love for [e'er and e'er]1."

I know not if thy love be as a fortress
And has withstood all other loves for me
I only know my love for thee is changeless
I still love thee
Each day I pray:
"God bless and keep thee,
God bless and keep thee,
keep thee, my love for [e'er and e'er]1."

Authorship

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Ives: in the score, in brackets underneath: "aye and aye"

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller

6. In the mornin' [sung text checked 1 time]

In the mornin' when I rise,
In the mornin' when I rise,
In the mornin' when I rise,
Give me Jesus!

Give me Jesus!
Give me Jesus!
You can have all the world, but
Give me Jesus!

'Twixt the cradle and the grave,
'Twixt the cradle and the grave,
'Twixt the cradle and the grave,
Give me Jesus!

Give me Jesus!
Give me Jesus!
You can have all the world, but
Give me Jesus!

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller

7. No more [sung text checked 1 time]

They walked beside the summer sea
And watched the slowly dying sun;
And 'Oh', she said, 'come back to me,
My love, my own, my only one!'
But, while he kissed her fears away,
The gentle waters kissed the shore,
And sadly whisp'ring, seemed to say,
'He'll come no more! He'll come no more!'

Alone beside the autumn sea
She watched the somber death of day;
And 'Oh', she said, remember me,
And love me, darling, far away!'
A cold wind swept the wat'ry gloom,
And, darkly whisp'ring on the shore,
Sighed out the secret of his doom,
'He'll come no more! He'll come no more!'

In peace beside the winter sea
A white grave glimmers to the moon;
And waves are fresh, and clouds are free,
Shrill winds pipe a careless tune.
One sleeps beneath the dark blue wave,
And one on the lonely shore;
But, joined in love, beyond the grave,
They part no more! They part no more!

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller

8. Peaks [sung text checked 1 time]

Quiet faces,
That look in faith
On distance,
I will come to you
And gaze upon that peace.
I cannot tell
If it be wind you see
Across the summer grain
Or the shaken agony
Of driven seas.

Authorship

First published in Poetry, v. 19/2, Nov. 1921, p. 87

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller

9. Pictures [sung text checked 1 time]

I. [The Cornfield]
 The ripe corn bends low
 When the wind blows fair,
 Like curtseying maidens,
 Curts'ying maidens
 With golden hair.

II. [The Sea]
 Dark billows reflect
 The gath'ring clouds;
 The white foam is frothing
 Like tossing shrouds.

III. [The Moor]
 Winds are sobbing
 In pinetree wood.
 The moor is a king's robe
 Stained with blood.

IV. [Night]
 The wild rose sleeps above the pool,
 Round her sleepeth every leaf;
 The night air, soft and cool,
 Cradles them all above the pool
 And all their shadows sleep beneath.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller

10. Rock of ages [sung text checked 1 time]

Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee,
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
O let me hide myself in Thee;
Let the water and the blood,
From Thy side, a healing flood,
Be of sin the double cure,
Save from wrath and make me pure,
Be of sin the double cure,
Save from wrath and make me pure.

Should my tears forever flow,
Should my zeal no languor know,
All for sin could not atone,
Thou must save, and Thou alone;
In my hand no price I bring,
Simply to Thy cross I cling,
To Thy cross I cling.

While I draw this fleeting breath,
When my eyelids close in Death,
When I rise to worlds unknown,
And see Thee on Thy Judgment Throne,
When I rise to worlds unknown,
See Thee on Thy Judgment Throne,
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee,
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee.

Authorship

Note: there is also a four-stanza version of this text.

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller

11. The one way [sung text checked 1 time]

Subtitle: The True Philosophy of all Nice Conservatories of Music and Nice "MUS. DOC'S" "IMBCDGODAMLILY"

Here are things you've heard before,
Turned out daily by the score,
Pretty rhymes you know
How gently on the ear
They bring a smile or bring a tear,
Do re mi fa mi re do.

When we go a-marching
Down thro' life and the Street,
O loud and free must the music be
With [the] tunes to match the feet.
Now a softer cadence,
Now we change the key,
Just to stage a come-back
To the main strain of our glee.
So if you'd go a-marching
To fortune or to Fame,
Perhaps the safest way's to play the same old, same old game.

Tunes we've often heard before,
Snatches of a dozen more,
Jingles row on row,
When borne upon the ear,
They bring a smile or bring a blear,
Do re me fa me re do.

When we go a-marching
Down the aisle or the Street,
O nice and sweet must the music bleat,
With [the] time to match the feet.
Now a softer cadence,
Now we change the key,
Just to stage a comeback
To the nice key of our glee.

So if you'd go a-marching
To Fortune or to Fame,
The safest way's to play the same old, same old game.

[Hola!  Huzza!  Je ne sais pas!]1

Authorship

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Ives: a bracketed alternative in the score is: "Same old game! Same old game! Same old game!"

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller

12. There is a certain garden [sung text checked 1 time]

There is a certain garden where I know
That flowers flourish in a poet's spring,
Where aye young birds their [amorous]1 matins sing,
And never ill wind [comes]2, nor any snow.

But if you wonder where so fair a show,
Where such eternal pleasure may be seen,
I say, my memory keeps that garden green,
Wherein I loved my first love long ago.

Authorship

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Omitted by Ives.
2 Ives: "blows"

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller

13. Yellow leaves [sung text checked 1 time]

Heart shaped yellow leaves
on thin brown switches
pointing upward like taper
flames in windless naves.
Yellow leaves among the green
like gold coins deep,
deep, deep in old fountains.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Barbara Miller