My soul to God, my heart to thee (Henry David Leslie)

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  • (Posted 2019-05-10)  CPDL #54196:         
Editor: James Gibb (submitted 2019-05-10).   Score information: A4, 9 pages, 142 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes:

General Information

Title: My soul to God, my heart to thee
Composer: Henry David Leslie
Lyricist: John Jones (Talhaiarn)

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

Language: English
Instruments: Keyboard

First published: 1869 in Novello Part-Song Book (2nd Series), Vol. 2, no. 75

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

1  "I see the swelling sail in motion,"
A Breton said, on bended knee;
"I'll seek my fortune on the ocean,
As fortune will not visit me.
I shall return some day or other,
Pray dry thine eyes, attend to me;
Whate'er, whate'er may happen, dearest Mother,
My soul to God, my heart to thee.

2  The seamen, singing at their leisure,
Proclaimed his fortune would be small,
That he would give his heart to pleasure
Forget his mother, lose his soul:
His thoughts were straying far and near,
While gazing on the stormy sea,
Repeating still, "My Mother dear,
My soul to God, my heart to thee.

3  At length returning with the treasure,
Which he amassed beyond the main,
His bosom glowed with joy and pleasure,
His Mother he would see again,
And free her from all thought and fear
Of sorrow, care, and poverty,
Repeating, "My Mother dear,
My soul to God, my heart to thee.”

4  Alas! his heart was sorely smitten,
Her face again he ne'er should see:
Upon her tomb this line was written,
"My son, we've parted, follow me!"
He read it through a blinding tear,
Exclaiming on his bended knee,
"In heaven and earth, my Mother dear,
My soul to God, my heart to thee."