This is the second piece in my song cycle, "Songs of the Sea." I selected the texts for this song cycle from a collection of poems written by late 19th century American poet and playwright Cale Young Rice. Each of the three texts attempts to grapple with different aspects of death and mortality while using rich imagery of the ocean. In Last Sight of Land the speaker wonders what their last few moments of life will be like - whether they will be dreary and regretful, or a triumphant plunge into the unknown. Widowed describes the lonely thoughts of someone who has lost a loved one. Finally, in Finitude the speaker muses about the small and temporary nature of life, contrasting it to the vastness of the ocean and the endlessness of the night sky. My greatest challenge while writing these songs was in trying to do justice to the beauty of the complex emotions present in each of the texts. This piece was commissioned by Skye Baxter and Benjamin Cooper.
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