New Composition - By The Rivers of Babylon Watch
I was very happy to be able to perform this piece of mine today with members of Corpus Christi Cambridge Chapel Choir. It is a setting of psalm 137, "By the Rivers of Babylon". The text expresses the yearnings of the Jewish people in exile following the Babylonian conquest of Jerusalem in 607 BCE. In its whole form, the psalm reflects the desire for Jerusalem as well as hatred for the Holy City's enemies with sometimes violent imagery.
The early lines of the poem are very well known, as they describe the sadness of the Israelites, asked to "sing the Lord's song in a foreign land". This they refuse to do, leaving their harps hanging on trees. The poem then turns into self-exhortation to remember Jerusalem and ends with violent fantasies of revenge.
For anybody else wishing to perform the piece, the sheet music is here: http://swadq.com/2015/05/by-the-rivers-of-babylon/