A new Christmas alphabet (Oliver Barton)

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  • (Posted 2003-04-29)  CPDL #04933:  Network.png PDF, MIDI and Finale 2004 files
Editor: Oliver Barton (submitted 2003-04-29).   Score information: A4, 5 pages, 274 kB   Copyright: Personal
Edition notes:

General Information

Title: A New Christmas Alphabet

Composer: Oliver Barton

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: SATB
Genre: SecularCarol

Language: English
Instruments: Piano

First published:
Description: You know The Christmas Alphabet (‘“C” is for the candy trimmed around the Christmas tree’, etc.), full of cloying sentiment. This version tells it as it is, featuring Auntie Maud (see Maud’s dream), the cat, overindulgence and so on, and finishing: ‘“S” is feeling sick from eating on and on and on— And sick at heart as well because the Christmas meaning’s gone.’ But the tune, which is newly composed even if it has similarities, is jolly.

Original text and translations

English.png English text

C is for the carols they bawl outside your door,
H is for the holly whose spikes you can’t ignore,
R is for the robin pecking out milkbottle tops,
I is the insanity of the overcrowded shops.
S is for the shopping centre’s Santa’s seedy stall,
T is for the turkey’s tin for which the stove’s too small,
M is for the muddy mess they tread throughout the house,
A is for a cat who’s just brought in a half-dead mouse,
S is for the sentiment that’s gushing from TV,
in specials filmed in summertime as anyone can

C’s for comic Christmas cards pretending to amuse,
H is for the hiccups brought on by too much booze,
R is for the rubbish spilling from the wheeliebin,
I’s for irritation growing up twixt kith and kin,
S is for the squabbles over less TV or more,
T is for the tree now shedding needles on the floor.
M is for the mother toiling at the kitchen sink,
A’s for Auntie Maudie who has driven her to drink.
S is feeling sick from eating on and on and on
and sick at heart as well because the Christmas meaning’s gone.