Threshold of Light was commissioned by the Memorial Church at Harvard University in celebration of its 75th anniversary. It was premiered on April 6, 2008 by the Harvard University Choir and Edward Elwyn Jones, Gund University Organist and Choirmaster.
Cambridge, February 2008
Translation by Helen Waddell (1889-1965)
Last night did Christ the Sun rise from the Dark,
Thy mystic harvest of the fields of God,
And now the little wandering tribes of bees
Are brawling in the scarlet flowers abroad.
The winds are soft with birdsong; all night long
Darkling the nightingale her descant told,
And now inside church doors the happy folk
The Alleluia chant a hundredfold.
O father of thy folk, be thine by right
The Easter joy, the threshold of light.
Sedulius Scottus (ca 820 – 880)
Surrexit Christus sol verus vespere noctis,
surgit et hinc domini mystica messis agri.
nunc vaga puniceis apium plebs laeta labore
floribus instrepitans poblite mella legit.
nunc variae volucres permulcent aethera cantu
temperat et pérnox nunc philomela melos.
nunc chorus ecclesiae cantat per cantica Sion,
alleluia suis centuplicatque tonis.
Tado, pater patriae, caelestis gaudia paschae
percipias meritis limina lucis: ave.