A Timbered Choir (download)


SATB (divisi), unaccompanied–5′

Wendell Berry’s poem about trees is set to grand chordal sonorities and singing melodic lines.

Listen to a performance by the First Readings Project, J. David Moore, cond.

Click the image below for a full-page preview:

Timbered Choir w



A Timbered Choir

SATB (divisi), unaccompanied
5′ duration
Text: Wendell Berry, from A Timbered Choir
Premiere—2012, by the First Readings Project, J. David Moore, cond.
12 pages

Also available in a version for SATB and organ

Commissioned by Saint Paul’s Episcopal Church, Minneapolis, MN
Premiere—2005, by the choir of Saint Paul’s Episcopal Church, Scott Rohr, Choirmaster.


Slowly, slowly they return
To the small woodland let alone:
Great trees, outspreading and upright,
Apostles of the living light.
. . . .
Tier after tier a timbered choir…. (excerpt)

Copyright © 1999 by Wendell Berry. Published by Shoemaker & Hoard Publishers.

Wendell E. Berry (b. 1934) is an American novelist, poet, environmental activist and farmer. He has written many novels, short stories, poems, and essays. He is an elected member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers, a recipient of The National Humanities Medal, and the Jefferson Lecturer for 2012. He is also a 2013 Fellow of The American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Berry was named the recipient of the 2013 Richard C. Holbrooke Distinguished Achievement Award. (Wikipedia)

Berry’s novella, A World Lost, provides the texts for David Evan Thomas’s A New American Sampler.




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