To Sing upon the Water is a graceful, lyrical piece, which draws its inspiration from the book "A Mystical Journey" by the 20th Century sufi mystic Muhammad Rahim Bawa Muhaiyaddeen (d. 1986, may God be pleased with him) and the poem "Auf dem Wasser zu Singen" by the German lyric poet Friedrich Leopold, Graf zu Stolberg-Stolberg (1750 - 1819). In "A Mystical Journey", a special boat, built of God's qualities, mysteriously carries its passengers over the five oceans of illusion to the ocean of God's grace. In the poem, "To Sing on the Water", the poet describes the serene joy the soul feels when at peace, as it contemplates its transition from this world to the eternal timelessness of the hereafter. This poem also inspired Schubert to set it as a song.
"Over the mirror of glimmering water, Glides as a swan our serene little boat; So thru the waters of joy does the spirit Glide on the glimmering waves like a boat. Down from the heaven the red of the evening Dances with radiant glow on the boat. Over the tops of the trees to the westward, Beckons the evening with soft ruddy light; Under the branches of groves to the eastward, Whispers the calmus in soft ruddy light. Joy of the heavens and peace of the evening, Breathed by the soul in the soft ruddy light, Throbbing and glowing in the soft ruddy light. So on their dew-covered pinions escaping, Days fly away with no count of the time. Swift as did yesturday, so will tomorrow, Flutter on by with no count of the time; Thus until borne by more glorious pinions, I too am merged in unchangeable time, Merged in eternal, unchangeable time".
31st October 2015, English Presbyterian Chapel, Aberdyfi, Karen Markham (pno), David Cooper (vln)
16th January 2016, Holy Trinity Church, Aberystwyth; Karen Markham (pno), David Cooper (vln)