Praise Wet Snow Falling Early

SATB, piano

This powerful choral setting of a Denise Levertov poem opens with a tender appreciation of morning's light, gradually growing into a broader meditation on darkness, transcendence and hope. With the understated sensibility of art song and a delicate and expressive piano accompaniment, "Praise Wet Snow Falling Early" offers an unforgettable, deeply moving experience, for both performers and audience. Recipient of Highest Honors in the "Waging Peace Through Singing" Project.


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Catalog Number: 
Commissioned By: 
Dryden Community Choir. Dryden, NY

Highest Honors, Waging Peace Through Singing Project


Festival Choir of Madison; Drew Collins, artistic director. Madison, WI
Michigan Youth Ensembles Chamber Singers; Paul Rardin, conductor. Ann Arbor, MI
Cayuga Vocal Ensemble; Tim Newton, conductor. Ithaca, NY
Denison Chamber Singers; Bonnie Borshay Sneed. Granville, OH
University of Southern Indiana Chamber Choir; Daniel Craig, conductor. Evansville, IN
American University Singers; Daniel Abraham, artistic director. Washington, DC
Cornell University's Sage Chapel Choir; Richard Riley, conductor. Ithaca, NY
Syracuse Vocal Ensemble; Bob Cowles, conductor. Syracuse & Geneva, NY
Hildegard Festival of Women in Music, Daniel Afonso, conductor. California State University, Stanislas, CA
Cantabile Chamber Chorale; Rebecca Scott, conductor. Piscataway, NJ
Elderhostel Choir; David King, conductor. Colorado State University, Pingree Park, CO
Oregon Repertory Singers; Gil Seeley, conductor. Waging Peace Through Singing Project, Eugene, OR
Littleton Chorale; James Ramsey, conductor. Littleton, CO
Cleveland High School Choir; Steve Peter, conductor. Portland, OR
Boulder Chorale; Timothy Snyder, conductor. Boulder, CO


"Opening almost as an art song, this work took full advantage of the chorus' wonderful pianissimo... Within a surprisingly short span of time, Alexander's work develops fully, touching on a range of emotions." Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)

"This is praise with a sharp purpose, reminding us that peace is no free gift, but a struggle against bloody impulse." ? Bruce Bush, Cantabile Chamber Chorale Notes (Piscataway, NJ)

Text Author or Source: 
Denise Levertov

"Praise Wet Snow Falling Early"
Poem by Denise Levertov

Praise wet snow
falling early.
Praise the shadow
my neighbor's chimney casts on the tile roof
even this gray October day that should, they say,
have been golden.
the invisible sun burning beyond
the white cold sky, giving us
light and the chimney's shadow.
god or the gods, the unknown,
that which imagined us, which stays
our hand,
our murderous hand,
and gives us
in the shadow of death,
our daily life,
and the dream still
of goodwill, of peace on earth.
flow and change, night and
the pulse of day.

© by New Directions Publishing Corporation. Reprinted by permission.