Anniversary Song

"Anniversary Song" is the seventh song of David Leisner's song cycle Fidelity.

This cycle was originally written for tenor, baritone and piano, but the tenor part may also be sung by a soprano.

The audio selection features Nina Faia, soprano, Anthony Zoeller, baritone, and Terry Decima, piano. The recording is from a live performance in Boston, 1998 (unrevised piano version). Used with the permission of the composer.

Date: 1996Composer: David LeisnerText: Wendell BerrySong Collection: Fidelity

Print vitals & song text


Anniversary Song (To Tanya)
by Wendell Berry

Our household for the time made right,
All right around us on the hill
For time and for this time, tonight,
Two kernels folded in one shell,

We’re joined in sleep beyond desire
To one another and to time,
Whatever time will take or spare,
Forest, field, house, and hollow room

All joined to us, to darkness joined,
All barriers down, and we are borne
Darkly, by thoroughfares unsigned
Toward light we come in time to learn,

In faith no better sighted yet
Than when we plighted first by hope,
By vows more solemn than we thought
Ourselves to this combining sleep

A quarter century ago,
Lives given to each other and
To time, to lives we did not know
Already given, heart and hand.

Would I come to this time this way
Again, now that I know, confess
So much, knowing I cannot say
More now than then what will be? Yes.

“1982: Part VIII” from Sabbaths by Wendell Berry. Copyright © 1987 by Wendell Berry. Used by arrangement with North Point Press, a division of Farrar, Strauss & Giroux, Inc. All rights reserved.

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