Haste On, My Joys! is the sixth in the series of seven songs setting poems by Robert Bridges. It’s a five-part setting (SSATB) written shortly after Finzi stopped teaching harmony at the Royal Academy of Music in London. With its very energetic part-writing and rhythmic writing Finzi’s music reflects the youthful exuberance of the first stanza as it glories in the swiftness in flight and the joy of youth and beauty. The voices come together in the second stanza and continue with a paean to youth in the third stanza. The writing gets a bit darker in the fourth stanza which Finzi reflects with his use of dissonance at the start of the verse before. Enjoy :-).
Gerald Finzi (1901-1956): Haste On, My Joys!
|Haste on, my joys! your treasure lies |
In swift, unceasing flight.
O haste: for while your beauty flies
I seize your full delight.
|Lo! I have seen the scented flower, |
Whose tender stems I cull,
For her brief date and meted hour
Appear more beautiful.
|O youth, O strength, O most divine |
For that so short ye prove;
Were but your rare gifts longer mine,
Ye scarce would win my love.
|Nay, life itself the heart would spurn, |
Did once the days restore
The days, that once enjoyed return,
Return, ah! nevermore.
Robert Bridges (1844-1930)
- Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge, conducted by Christopher Robinson.