In the Bleak Midwinter 

Kyle Pederson (2016)

Voicing: SATB
Accompaniment:  Piano

Text:

Into the pall of winter's day
when dark descends and daylight fades
Into the cold of wint'ry night
When breath will hang as heavy ice
Into the bleak December land
where earth is fixed--and frozen stands
Into a world of dark and gloom
A child will come in manger soon

In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind made moan
Earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone
Snow had fallen, snow on snow,
snow on snow

In the bleak mid-winter
long ago(C. Rossetti) 

Into the bleak of my own soul
You gently lay a seed to grow
And soon the seed becomes a tree
that offers shade through Christ in me
What right should I share in this gift
of perfect love, Who was and is--
No right at all, but simply grace
Your seed turned tree--now holy space

Come quickly, come, Oh Spirit breath
And all creation may you bless
Our mangers wait--just wood and dust
Oh Spirit breathe--enliven us
Even the heav'ns cannot contain
The hope and joy which has a name
Into our manger hearts we gaze
Where God in flesh has now been laid. 

In the bleak midwinter,
Christ, Emmanuel.

Notes:
This piece pairs the iconic melody of Gustav Holst's In the Bleak Midwinter with a lesser known, but equally beautiful melody by Bruce Becker, originally set to the text of The Tree of Life.  In this arrangement, the composer weaves both melodies together, and integrates Christina Rossetti's classic text with newly crafted lyrics speaking to the anticipation and meaning of Christmas.

Audio Recording Note:  “Matthew Curtis and Choral Tracks studio recording”