38 songs by Edward MacDowell (1860-1908)

Op. 40 Six Love Songs (1890) Sweet Blue-eyed Maid . Sweetheart Tell Me . Thy Beaming Eyes .
_______For Sweet Love's Sake . O Lovely Rose . I Ask But This
Op. 41 Two Songs (1890) for male chorus Cradle Song . Dance of Gnomes
Op. 43 Two Northern Songs (1891) for mixed chorus The Brook . Slumber Song
Op. 44 Barcarolle (1892) for mixed chorus with four-hand piano accompaniment
Op. 47 Eight Songs (1893) The Robin Sings in the Apple Tree . Midsummer Lullaby . Folksong . Confidence .
_______The West Wind Croons in the Cedar Trees . In the Woods . The Sea . Through the Meadow
Op. 9 Two Old Songs (1894) Deserted . Slumber Song
Op. 52 Three Choruses (1897) for male voices Hush, Hush! . From the Sea . The Crusaders
Op. 53 Two Choruses (1898) for male voices Bonnie Ann . The Collier Lassie
Op. 54 Two Choruses (1898) for male voices A Ballad of Charles the Bold . Midsummer Clouds
Op. 56 Four Songs (1898) Long Ago, Sweetheart Mine . The Swan Bent Low to the Lily .
_______A Maid Songs Light, and a Maid Sings Low . As the Gloaming Shadows Creep
Op. 58 Three Songs (1899) Constancy . Sunrise . Merry Maiden Spring
Op. 60 Three Songs (1902) Tyrant Love . Fair Springtide . To the Goldenrod

Six Love Songs, op. 40 (1890)

verses by W. H. Gardner

free online sheet music of this composition


1 Sweet Blue-eyed Maid

Sweet blue-eyed maid, where goest thou, where goest thou?
Art thou afraid to meet me now?
Come tell me pray who hath thy heart?
Or doth it beat without love's smart?
Ha, ha! thy cheeks say thou art mine.
No lover seeks a truer sign.
Thy cheeks say thou art mine.
Dear heart I know thou lov'st but me, thou lov'st but me.
Thine eyes say so. They speak for thee.
Thy cheeks say thou art mine, say thou art mine.
Thy cheeks say thou art mine. I know thou lov'st but me.

2 Sweetheart Tell Me

Sweetheart tell me what befell thee, why this grief today?
Tell me dearest what thou fearest. Brush thy tears away.
Sweetheart tell me what befell thee, why this grief today?
Tell me dearest what thou fearest. Brush thy tears away.
See, sweet maiden, Love is laden with a treasure rare.
He, believe me, will relieve thee of thy load of care.

3 Thy Beaming Eyes

1912 recording by Alan Turner
1917 recording by Ernestine Schumann-Heink

Thy beaming eyes are paradise to me, my love, to me.
Thy trembling kiss is heav'nly bliss to me, sweet love.
But oh, thy heart! It has no part with thee, my dear.
Tis strangely cold and doth withhold its love, I fear.
Thy beaming eyes are Paradise to me, my dear.

4 For Sweet Love's Sake

For sweet love's sake I pray thee take this little knot of blue, this little knot of blue.
It only shows the love that glows within thy heart so true.
But shouldst thou find that Love is unkind, grieve not, o lovely maid, grieve not, grieve not.
For winds will blow and tears will flow before love's debt is paid.
For sweet love's sake I pray thee take this little knot of blue.

5 O Lovely Rose

O lovely rose, no flower that grows is half so fair as thou, as thou.
Thy beauty rare beyond compare makes me in homage bow.
O cruel rose, thou dost disclose a loveliness divine,
But had I seen thy thorns, I ween I'd all thy love decline.

6 I Ask But This

I ask but this, yet one more kiss while twilight lingers by.
No one will see or care if we thus say our sweet "goodbye."
I ask but this, but this, just one more, one more, love.
The stars above won't look at us, the stars above won't look at us, sweetheart.
And they'll not tell, they'll not tell.
They know full well, they know full well, how all fond lovers part.

Two Songs, op. 41 (1890)

for male chorus

free online sheet music of this composition


1 Cradle Song

after Peter Cornelius (1824-1874)
Birdling's flying to his nest, wings are weary roaming.
Boats are sailing home to rest from the ocean's moaning.
Twilight soothes the sun to sleep. Far has he been coming.
Now he sinks in heaven's bed in the crimson gloaming.
Birdling rests in his warm nest, boats at anchor rocking.
Fast asleep is now the sun. Hush my darlings's nodding.
Hush my darling's nodding, nodding. Hush, hush.

2 Dance of Gnomes

Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!
From the shadow through the moonlight,
In the forest's deepest glades,
Dainty dances often have we,
Dainty dances often have we,
In the midnight's balmy shades.
From the shadow through the moonlight
In the forest's deepest glades,
In the midnight's balmy shades.

Flower fairies, proud, frail mockers
Call us ugly, hairy imps.
Could we snare ye in our circle,
Could we catch ye with our magic,
Could we catch ye with our magic,

Then gay flaunters would we teach ye
How all true love conquers kind.
Our long beards and "ugly" noddles
Would be lovely to your mind,
Would be lovely to your mind.

Ha! laugh on, ye willful hussies.
Play your pranks on other guys!
Play your pranks on other guys!
While the moonbeams light our gambols,
Can we live without your eyes,
Without your eyes.

Mockers call us ugly, ugly,
Ugly, ugly, ugly, ugly,
Ugly, hairy imps!

from Verses by Edward MacDowell (1908):

Dance of Gnomes

From the shadow through the moonlight,
In the forest's deepest glades,
Dainty dances often have we
In the midnight's balmy shades.

Flower fairies, proud, frail mockers
Call us ugly hairy imps.
Could we snare ye in our circle
Where your magic halts and limps,

Then gay flaunters would we teach ye
How all true love conquers kind.
Our long beards and "ugly noddles"
Would be lovely to your mind.

Ha! laugh on, ye wilful hussies,
Play your pranks on other guys,
While the moonbeams light our gambols,
Can we live without your eyes.

This poem version has a rhyming line
that is missing from the song version.

Two Northern Songs, op. 43 (1891)

for mixed chorus

free online sheet music of this composition


1 The Brook

In sunlight and shadow through forest and field,
Laughing and crying, softly sighing,
A tiny stream shallow runs on, on, on, on.
From streamlet to river till lost in the ocean,
Dreaming of love, of strife, of devotion,
So runs our life, ends our life of emotion.
Ah! Ah! Ah!

2 Slumber Song

Frozen is the ground. The stream's ice-bound.
Softly the north wind croons, softly croons.
Drowsy, sleepily falls the snow
As the frost king carves his runes, carves his runes.
Misty dreamland's moonlit strand
Awaits the coming guest, 'waits the guest.
The pine logs smoulder as soft on my shoulder
A flaxen head sinks to rest, sinks to rest.
Misty dreamland's moonlit strand
Awaits the guest.

Notice how "Slumber Song" is related to the two poems
by Edward MacDowell shown. See also a later song version
of "Slumber Song" in Two Old Songs, op. 9 (1894).
from Verses by Edward MacDowell (1908):

From the North

Frozen the ground,
The stream ice-bound,
Softly the North wind croons:
Drowsily, sleepily,
The snow doth fall,
As the frost king carves his runes.

After the snow,
From Thor's hammer, a blow,
Will make the sky blaze with light.
Walhalla's flaming,
Waxing and waning,
Will gleam through the dark blue night.

Slumber Song

Dearest, sleep sound,
The stream's ice-bound,
Softly the North wind moans:
Drowsily, silently,
Falls the snow
O'er the dark pine cones.

Misty dreamland's
Moonlit strand
Awaits
my darling's coming:
Ah! Saint Olaf,
Guard him well,
Through the magic gloaming.

Through fields of sleep,
In silence deep,
Slips the laggard guest:
The pine logs smoulder,
As soft on my shoulder,
A flaxen head sinks to rest.

Barcarolle, op. 44 (1892)

for mixed chorus with four-hand piano accompaniment

free online sheet music of this composition


Barcarolle

after Friedrich Bodenstedt (1819-1892)
The glowing sunshine's beaming,
Far o'er the ocean streaming
And all the waves are gleaming,
In sunlight glory dreaming.

Thy love is the sunshine's beaming
Which through my song is streaming,
Ah, lov'd one read its meaning
Or let me stay on dreaming.

Eight Songs, op. 47 (1893)

free online sheet music of this composition

1 The Robin Sings in the Apple Tree

1913 recording by Ernestine Schumann-Heink
The robin sings in the apple tree, the blackbird swings on the thorn.
The day grows old and silence falls, leaving my heart forlorn.
Night brings rest to many a soul, yet mine is dark with woe.
Can I forget the days gone by when my love I whispered low?
O robin, and thou blackbird brave, my songs of love have died.
How could you sing as in byegone days, when she was by my side!

2 Midsummer Lullaby

after Goethe (1749-1832)
Silver clouds are lightly sailing through the drowsy, trembling air,
And the golden summer sunshine casts a glory everywhere.
Softly sob and sigh the billows as they dream in shadows sweet,
And the swaying reeds and rushes kiss the mirror at their feet.

3 Folksong

W. D. Howells (1837-1920)
Is it the shrewd October wind brings the tears into her eyes?
Does it blow so strong that she must fetch her breath in sudden sighs?
The sound of his horse's feet grows faint, grows faint, grows faint.
The rider has passed from sight, has passed, has passed from sight.
The day dies out of the crimson west, and coldly falls the night.
She presses her tremulous fingers tight against her closed eyes,
And on the lonesome threshold there she cowers down and cries.

4 Confidence

Noonday sun or night have for me one light.
Love shines in it bright, through deep brown eyes.
Scoffers tell a tale that love grows pale,
That love grows pale, that brown eyes fail.
Ah, how wise! ah, how wise!
Surely true love's might puts such fears to flight.
In those brown eyes bright love never dies!
In those brown eyes love never dies, love never dies!
In those brown eyes love never dies!

5 The West Wind Croons in the Cedar Trees

The west wind croons in the cedar trees, the goldenrod nods by the lea,
And Maud there's love in your bonny black eyes; can it be meant for me?
The west wind dies in the cedar trees, the goldenrod droops by the lea,
And Maud there's scorn in your merry black eyes; surely not meant for me!
The east wind moans in the cedar trees, the goldenrod's dead by the lea,
And Maud you may glance with your cruel black eyes; winter has come for me.

6 In the Woods

after Goethe (1749-1832)
In the woods at eve I wandered, through the sunset's crimson light.
In the woods, in the woods at eve, there sat Damon playing softly on the flute for my delight.
So, la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la.

Ah, he swore he loved me truly, begged me would I love him too,
And he bewitched me with his music, as it thrilled the forest through.
So, la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la.

Now my heart ne'er ceases longing for a lover proven false, proven false, proven false,
And that cruel, haunting music, still my restless soul enthalls.
So, la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la.

7 The Sea

W. D. Howells (1837-1920)

2003 recording by Thomas Hampson (baritone) and Craig Rutenberg (piano)

One sails away to sea, to sea, one stands on the shore and cries.
The ship goes down the world, and the light on the sullen water dies.
The whispering shell is mute, and after is evil cheer.
She shall stand on the shore and cry in vain, in vain, many and many a year.
But the stately wide-winged ship lies wrecked, lies wrecked on the unknown deep.
Far under, dead in his coral bed, the lover lies asleep.
Far under, dead in his coral bed, the lover lies asleep, asleep.

8 Through the Meadow

W. D. Howells (1837-1920)
The summer sun was soft and bland,
As they went through the meadow land.
Across the stream was scarce a step,
And yet she feared to try the leap,
And he to still her sweet alarm,
Must lift her over on his arm.

She could not keep the narrow way,
For still the little feet would stray,
And ever must he bend t'undo
The tangled grasses from her shoe,
From dainty rosebed lips in pout,
Must kiss the perfect flower out!

Ah! little coquette! Fair deceit!
Some things are bitter that were sweet.
Ah! ah! little coquette!
Some things are bitter that were sweet.

Two Old Songs, op. 9 (1894)


1 Deserted

Robert Burns (1759-1796)

free online sheet music of this composition

Ye banks and braes o' bonnie Doon, how can ye bloom sae fair!
How can ye chant, ye little birds, and I sae fu' o' care!
Thou'll break my heart, thou bonnie bird that sings beside thy mate;
For sae I sat, and sae I sang, and wist na o' my fate.

Oft hae I roved by bonnie Doon to see the woodbine twine,
And ilka bird sang o' its love; and sae did I o' mine, o' mine.
Wi' lightsome heart I pu'd a rose frae aff its thorny tree;
And my fause lover staw the rose, but left the thorn wi' me.

Thou'll break my heart, thou bonnie bird that sings upon the bough;
Thou minds me o' the happy days when my fause Luve was true, was true, was true.

2 Slumber Song

free online sheet music of this composition
Dearest, sleep sound,
The stream's ice-bound,
The stream's ice-bound.
Softly the north wind moans,
Drowsy, sleepily, falls the snow,
Falls the snow o'er the dark pine cones.
Dearest, sleep sound, sleep sound.

Dearest, sleep sound,
Misty dreamland's moonlit strand
Awaits the coming guest.
The pine logs smoulder
As soft on my shoulder
A flaxen head sinks to rest, to rest.
Dearest, sleep sound, sleep sound.

Three Choruses, op. 52 (1897)

for male voices

free online sheet music of this composition


1 Hush, Hush!

The lyrics are based on this poem by Thomas Moore (1779-1852):

Hush, Hush

"Hush, hush!"--how well
That sweet word sounds,
When Love, the little sentinel,
Walks his night-rounds;
Then, if a foot but dare
One rose-leaf crush,
Myriads of voices in the air
Whisper, "Hush, hush!"

"Hark, hark, 'tis he!"
The night elves cry,
And hush their fairy harmony,
While he steals by;
But if his silvery feet
One dew-drop brush,
Voices are heard in chorus sweet,
Whispering, "Hush, hush!"

2 From the Sea

The lyrics are similar to this poem in Verses by Edward MacDowell (1908):

A Voice from the Sea

The gaunt pines sway 'neath the north wind's wrath
And shrink from the roaring sea,
That writhes and twists on a rugged shore,
And mourns unceasingly.

From far on high mid the castle walls,
That look the north in the face,
A torch flames glaring and fitfully,
Braving the storm's wild pace.

And beside the flaming beacon
Sits a woman as carven stone;
She peers out into the darkness
And moans, "Thy will be done."

3 The Crusaders

The lyrics are similar to this poem in Verses by Edward MacDowell (1908):

The Crusaders

Sword, bright sword, scimitar blade of curved steel,
Thou, 'fore the cross shall fail.
Woe to ye! sinister horsemen of the East,
Bend, ere our faith prevail.
O! thou desert's burning strand,
Flaming crescent's arid land,
Thou art but a grain of sand
In the hollow of God's hand.
God with us!

Far o'er the sea,
Where Britain's white cliffs gleam,
Sing the lark and the robin
In cool meadows green.
Seet-briar and thorn
Hear lover's vows at eve,
Ah, thou bonny England,
Hard wert thou to leave!

Onward still, though the heart be burned to dust,
On towards the holy grave.
Woe to ye! Saracen pagans of the East,
Bend thy souls to save.
O, thou desert's burning strand,
Flaming crescent's arid land,
Thou art but a grain of sand
In the hollow of God's hand.
God with us!

Two Choruses, op. 53 (1898)

for male voices

free online sheet music of this composition


1 Bonnie Ann

The lyrics are based on this song by Robert Burns (1759-1796):

Ye gallants bright I red you right,
Beware o' bonie Ann;
Her comely face sae fu' o' grace,
Your heart she will trepan.
Her een sae bright, like stars by night,
Her skin sae like the swan;
Sae jimply lac'd her genty waist,
That sweetly ye might span.

Youth, grace and love attendant move,
And pleasure leads the van:
In a' their charms and conquering arms,
They wait on bonie Ann.
The captive bands may chain the hands,
But loove enslaves the man:
Ye gallants braw, I red you a',
Beware o' bonie Ann.

2 The Collier Lassie

The lyrics are based on this song by Robert Burns (1759-1796):

O when she cam ben she bobbed fu' law,
O when she cam ben she bobbed fu' law,
And when she cam ben she kiss'd Cockpen,
And syne deny'd she did it at a'.

And was na Cockpen right saucy witha',
And was na Cockpen right saucy witha',
In leaving the dochter of a lord,
And kissin a Collier-lassie an' a'.

O never look down, my lassie at a',
O never look down, my lassie at a',
Thy lips are as sweet and thy figure compleat,
As the finest dame in castle or ha'.

Tho' thou has nae silk and holland sae sma,
Tho' thou has nae silk and holland sae sma,
Thy coat and thy sark are thy ain handiwark,
And lady Jean was never sae braw.

Two Choruses, op. 54 (1898)

for male voices

free online sheet music of this composition


1 A Ballad of Charles the Bold

The lyrics are similar to this poem in Verses by Edward MacDowell (1908):

A Ballad of Charles the Bold

Duke Charles rode forth at early dawn
Through drifting morning mists,
His armour frosted by the dew
Gleamed sullenly defiance.
Silently the Duke did ride
And idly clanked his sword,
But woe to him who caught his eye,
For Death led forth his charger.
All day long the battle raged.
And spirits mingles with the mist
That wreathed the warring knights:
Caressed the mailed heroes
And numbed their freezing wounds,
Till dull grey, stained with crimson.
Seemed flushed with tropic sunshine,
And Death lulled warm to rest.
But Charles, thou mighty Duke
That rodest forth at morn,
Ah! Charles, Death brought no peace to thee,
To thee who dies that day,
For King Louis sits alone
And counts thine all his very own:
And now he lords o'er Burgundy
And grips thy heart-strings yet,
Louis of France and Burgundy Rex,
King Louis reigns alone.
God rest thee, Charles.

2 Midsummer Clouds

The lyrics are similar to this poem in Verses by Edward MacDowell (1908):

Midsummer Clouds

Through the clear meadow blue,
Wander fleecy white lambs,
And darker in shadow
The watch dog stands.

Far away towards the south
Gleams a city of domes,
A silent white city
Of snowy cones.

The flock wanders on,
And the sun sinks to bed,
The city is golden,
Now burning red.

And the light dies away
As the silent dim shapes
Sail on through the gloaming,
Towards dreamland's gates.

Four Songs, op. 56 (1898)


1 Long Ago, Sweetheart Mine

free online sheet music of this composition
1912 recording by Alma Gluck
1923 recording by Olive Kline
Long ago, sweetheart mine,
Roses bloomed as ne'er before.
Long ago the world was young
For us, sweetheart.

Fields of velvet, azure skies,
Whisp'ring trees, and murm'ring stream;
Long ago Life spread his wings
For us, sweetheart.

And now that night is near
Must God's harvest e'en be reaped.
Yet our love, our love shall live
For aye, sweetheart.

2 The Swan Bent Low to the Lily

free online sheet music of this composition
1923 recording by Royal Dadmun
"The Swan bent low to the Lily,
"Mid wav'ring shadows green,
"And the songs he murmur'd softly,
"Know'st thou what they mean?"

"I could tell thee truly,
"But oh, I may not dare.
"Look in my eyes and tell me,
"What said the Lily fair?"

3 A Maid Sings Light, and a Maid Sings Low

free online sheet music of this composition
A maid sings light, and a maid sings low,
With a merry, merry laugh in her eyes of sloe.
I tell thee lad, have a care, nor dare,
Lest thou lose thy heart in the fair one's snare.

And doth she pout, and doth she sigh,
And doth she pout, and doth she sigh.
Ne'er go too close, nor dry her eye,
Too close, not dry her eye.
I tell thee lad, have a care, she's fair.
She'll surely laugh thy prayer to air.

For a maid loves light, and a maid loves so,
That a merry, merry laugh will answer thy woe.
I tell thee lad, have a care, nor dare,
Lest thou lose thy heart in the fair one's snare.

4 As the Gloaming Shadows Creep

free online sheet music of this composition
As the gloaming shadows creep
Through the forest deep,
Fra Nightingale sings sweet,
Sings sweet through the forest deep.

As through the trees the moonbeams sweep,
Lo! a maid with eager feet
Seeks in vain her love to greet.
Ah sweet, why moan, why moan and weep?

For aye the gloaming shadows creep
And hearts will cease to beat.
Still Fra Nightingale sings sweet,
Sings sweet when love is deep, when love is deep.

Three Songs, op. 58 (1899)


1 Constancy

free online sheet music of this composition
Old lilac bushes thin and grey
In wistful longing sigh.
Dishevelled roses blush in vain.
No mistress lingers by.

The tansy creeps e'en to the door
Through garden tangles sweet.
Gaunt apple trees their wizened fruit
Strew at the master's feet.

And lo! a cricket bravely chirps
Throughout the lonely house.
But those who lov'd there long ago,
They sleep too deep to 'rouse.

Yet keep, oh keep your trust to heart.
'Twill never last now long.
For house and ye shall pass away,
Yea! even as my song, my song.

2 Sunrise

free online sheet music of this composition
Sunrise gilds the crested sea
That mocks grim Oban's might.
But at his feet sways sullenly
A ship that died 'the night.
The ocean's breast doth throb no more
For such a wreck as she.
The rocks gnaw at her broken heart.
The sun shines pit'lessly.

3 Merry Maiden Spring

free online sheet music of this composition
A winsome morning measure
Trips merry maiden Spring,
O'er daffodils and daisies,
To crown the Summer king.
A winsome morning measure
Trips merry, merry maiden Spring,
Trips merry maiden Spring!

And once the king is crowned,
And twilight 'gins to fall,
Brown Autumn slips the postern gate
At grim old Winter's call.

But soon the rosy morning
With joyous songs shall ring,
And daffodils and daisies
Will welcome merry Spring,
And daffodils and daisies
Will welcome merry, merry maiden Spring,
Will welcome Spring!

Three Songs, op. 60 (1902)


1 Tyrant Love

free online sheet music of this composition
Where e'er Love be,
Tyrant he,
Without merci.
Pread as thou may, ah me!
He ne'er thy tears will see,
Ah me, ah me!

Light wings hath he
As any bee.
Let not him free,
For he alone, ah me,
He alone can rule the kingdom he
Hath won, ah me!

Where e'er Love be,
Tyrant he,
Without merci.
But hold him close, ma mie,
As bishop to his see,
For me, for me!

2 Fair Springtide

free online sheet music of this composition
Fair Springtide cometh once again,
Stirs the sap in lonely trees,
To wake again the bitter joy
Of love that mortal eye ne'er sees.

The bitter joy of love.
Why waken those who sleep so sound?
Why cause again the tears to flow?
Ah Springtide, thou dost touch the quick
Of ev'ry creature here below.
Ah Springtide, ah Springtide,
Why waken those who sleep so sound
And cause the tears to flow?

Yet though the tears be bittersweet,
They come like soothing Summer rain,
And lo! the mournful desert heart
Grows green with lovelorn pain again.

3 To the Golden Rod

free online sheet music of this composition
A lissome maid with towseled hair
As soft as e'er a squirrel's vair,
With ne'er a care, all silky fair,
She sways to ev'ry wooing air.

She flaunts her golden gown with grace
And laughs in sturdy Autumn's face,
A ray of sunshine in the race
That ends with hoary Winter's pace.

Within my heart, O maiden fair,
Old Winter's frown can ne'er efface
Thy wayward grace so debonair,
Thou princess of a nomad race.


"A house of dreams untold, it looks out over the whispering tree-tops and faces the setting sun."
The cabin near Peterborough, New Hampshire, where MacDowell composed most of his later music.

MIDI sequences of compositions by Edward MacDowell
sheet music of compositions by Edward MacDowell

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