Song of the Pines

SATB a cappella

My carols are a continuation of a family tradition begun in 1922 by my great-grandfather, Rev. Bates Burt, who wrote original carols and sent them as Christmas cards. His son, Alfred Burt, wrote 15 now famous carols. In 2001, I took up the family tradition, and in 2005, wrote "Song of the Pines" and sent it out as my family's Christmas card.

This carol is "additive," i.e. each verse adds a voice-part (alto+ten+sop+bass). It is deeply rooted in my love for early polyphony, the divine mystery, and long snowy walks among the pine trees of Lake Superior, where Bates Burt built his home.


You are missing some Flash content that should appear here! Perhaps your browser cannot display it, or maybe it did not initialize correctly.

Order Sheet Music
Catalog Number: 
Publishing Series: 
Burt Family Carol Series
Total Pages: 
Premiere Date: 
Premiere Ensemble: 
MPR Carolers
See video

Brookfield Unitarian Universalist Church (Lila Farrar)
Camerata Nova (Ross Brownlee) - Winnipeg, Manitoba, CANADA
Camrose Camerata (Joy-Anne Murphy)
Choir of King's Chapel (Heinrich Christensen) - Boston, Massachusetts
Choir of Unitarian Universalist Church West (Ruben Piirainen) - Brookfield, Wisconsin
First Unitarian Church of Duluth (Karen Bauman)
First Unitarian Universalist Church (Jason Shelton)
Hobart and William Smith College Choirs (Robert Cowles) - Geneva, New York
MACxima (Keith Brown) - Ohio
Michigan Tech Chamber Choir (Jared Anderson) - Houghton, Michigan
Minnetonka Choral Society (Jere Lantz) - Deephaven, Minnesota
MPR Carolers - Saint Paul, Minnesota
St. Martin's Chamber Choir - Denver, Colorado
Sunday Night Singers - Lancaster, California
Syracuse Vocal Ensemble (Robert Cowles) - Dewitt, New York
Unitarian Universalist Musicians Network National Conference (Kela Wanyama) - St. Paul, MN
Utah Chamber Artists (Dr. Barlow Bradford) - Salt Lake City, Utah
Voces Novae et Antiquae (Robert Ross) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Walden Hill Vocal Ensemble (Joe Mish) - Rochester, Minnesota

Text Author or Source: 
Abbie Betinis

Night, and the world asleep,
All the silver pines are still,
Here the moonlit earth lies bleak and chill,
Mirabile Mysterium, a child is born...

Now, a celestial song
Shiv'ring down from lofty cones,
Drops bough by bending bough in whispered tones:
Mirabile Mysterium, a child is born...

Blow! You great Northwind,
Carry this song of long ago,
And on your way redeem us all in snow,
Mirabile Mysterium, a child is born...

Lo! How immortal hymns
Fall from the lips of wakened souls,
Hail! Arise and greet the babe the choir extols,
Mirabile Mysterium, a child is born...

Night, and the world asleep,
But for the song of the snowy pine,
O! Yet here is God's own evidence divine,
Mirabile Mysterium, a child is born.

Text © 2005 by Abbie Burt Betinis. For permission to reprint this text, please contact the author.