Of Air, Land and Sea — March 5, 2021

Derived from a range of outstanding choral music, my themed Playlists are designed to be like concerts, of about an hour in length.

The music of this week’s Playlist describes the majesty, beauty and wonder of creation, featuring “The Fifth Day” and “The Sixth Day” from Haydn’s The Creation, in which the composer musically depicts various creatures, including the lion, tiger and even a creeping worm! Also on the program are settings of Native American prayers about creation by Stephen Paulus and Brent Michael Davids of the Mohican Nation Stockbridge–Munsee tribe. The program concludes with Beethoven’s dramatic “Calm Sea and Prosperous Voyage.”

Listen on YouTube:

Listen on Spotify:


Click the links for information on the pieces and texts/translations.

Joseph Haydn (1732-1809)

“The Fifth Day” and “The Sixth Day” (from The Creation)

And God Said: Let the Waters Bring Forth Abundantly
On Mighty Pens Uplifted Soars the Eagle
And God Created Great Whales
And the Angels Struck Their Immortal Harps
Most Beautiful Appear, With Verdure Young Adorn’d –The Lord is Great
And God Said: Let the Earth Bring Forth the Living Creature
Straight Opening Her Fertile Womb
Now Heaven in Fullest Glory Shines
And God Created Man
In Native Worth and Honour Clad
And God Saw Ev’rything That He Had Made
Achieved is the Glorious Work


Performed by Gabrieli, conducted by Paul McCreesh


Brent Michael Davids (b.1959)

Zuni Sunrise Song (from Native American Suite)

Pueblo Text: Unknown; Zuni Sunrise celebrates the new day as it calls morning into existence.

Performed by VocalEssence, conducted by Philip Brunelle


Stephen Paulus (1949-2014)

Great Spirit (from Prayers and Remembrances)

Oh, Great Spirit, whose voice I hear in the wind,
Whose breath gives life to all the world,
Hear me! I come to you as one of your many children.
I am small and weak.
I need your strength and your wisdom.
May I walk in beauty.
Make my eyes behold the red and purple sunset.
Make my hands respect the things that you have made,
And my ears sharp to hear your voice.
Make me wise so that I may know the things
That you have taught your children —
The lessons that you have hidden in every leaf and rock.
Make me strong, not to be superior to my brothers,
but to be able to fight my greatest enemy: myself.
Make me ever ready to come to you with straight eyes, so that
When life fades as the faded sunset
My spirit will come to you without shame.
                    Trans. John Yellow Lark

Performed by True Concord, conducted by Eric Holtan


Libby Larsen (b.1950)

Beneath These Alien Stars (from The Settling Years)

Beneath these alien stars
In darkness I have stood alone,
More than mountains
Come between me and my home.

The desert wind has waved my hair:
Desert sands have etched my face,
And the courage of the mountains
Has bound me to this place.

And something of its peace live won,
I have stood with only God,
Between me and the sun.
                    Vesta Pierce Crawford (1899-1983)

Performed by Dale Warland Singers, conducted by Dale Warland


Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)

Meeresstille und Glückliche Fahrt, Op.112

Background and Translation

Performed by Monteverdi Choir & Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique, conducted by John Eliot Gardiner