I would I were the Glow-worm (Harold William Rhodes)

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  • (Posted 2023-12-01)  CPDL #77767:     
Editor: David Anderson (submitted 2023-12-01).   Score information: Letter, 8 pages, 628 kB   Copyright: Personal
Edition notes:

General Information

Title: I would I were the Glow-worm
Composer: Harold William Rhodes

Lyricist: Mathilde Blind
Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: SATB
Genre: SecularPartsongFolksong

Language: English
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1921 Novello and Co.
Description: Irish Air: LONDONDERRY

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

I would I were the glow-worm, thou the flower,
That I might fill thy cup with glimmering light;
I would I were the bird, and thou the bower,
To sing thee songs throughout the summer night.

I would I were a pine tree deeply rooted,
And thou the lofty, cloud-beleaguered rock,
Still, while the blasts of heaven around us hooted,
To cleave to thee and weather every shock.

I would I were the rill, and thou the river;
So might I, leaping from some headlong steep,
With all my waters lost in thine for ever,
Be hurried onwards to the unfathomed deep.

I would—what would I not? O foolish dreaming!
My words are but as leaves by autumn shed,
That, in the faded moonlight idly gleaming,
Drop on the grave where all our love lies dead.