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Advent 2020 December 4

by Marnen E. Laibow-Koser

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Claudia Chapman wrote these lyrics as a poem at the end of the difficult year of 2020. I set them to music as an acknowledgement of all we’ve gone through in 2020 and as a message of hope for a better 2021 and beyond.

—Marnen E. Laibow-Koser


My father taught me
that sometimes a farmer must leave a field
that has been overworked
to lie fallow for a year
so it may heal
and be restored to good health
and balance.

Perhaps this is the year for Christmas to lie fallow.

The earth has been
smothered with toxins
and pushed to the breaking point.
And so it broke.

People have been pushed,
and prodded
and told to "lean in"
to a vision of what it means
to be successful
what it means to be
that is
nutty as a fruitcake.
And so we have broken.

So this year
the Yuletide must lie fallow
in the universal field
of our collective being.
Instead of leaning in
perhaps it's our time to surrender
to sleeping in
and renewing our connection
to the stillness
of the earth in wintertime.

And in our slumber
the earth will whisper to us
of a better way to live.
And in our rest
we will gather the strength
and the will
and the love
to make it so.

—Claudia Chapman


released January 3, 2021
Katie O’Reilly, soprano
Marnen E. Laibow-Koser, piano

Score is available for download at drive.google.com/file/d/1WPU6uHHFJgXUdDun1UKsHcSw2NZwDcBf/view?usp=sharing . See more of my works at www.marnen.org/composition.html


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Marnen E. Laibow-Koser Randolph, Massachusetts

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