Munelight amang the pines

Music: Frances Cockburn. Words: Hugh MacDiarmid (1892-1978)
performance time approx 0m 45s
Range S: d' – e'' / A: a – c'' / T: e – c' / B: F – d
Price code: B
Complexity: **

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Hugh MacDiarmid was a major voice in the Scottish literary Renaissance of the 20th century. This beautifully evocative poem compares the play of light and shadow in nature with the light and dark of a person's inner life. Love is a very powerful force - a mere glimpse of it sends everything else 'plunging into night'.

This is a simple harmonization which allows the audience to focus on the words. Consider pairing it with some others in the same style (see for example Three Helen Cruickshank songs, Three Marion Angus songs, and the other Hugh MacDiarmid setting When day is done).

Pronunciation guide included


Thraw oot your shadaws
Owre the heich hillsides,
A' ye lang trees
Whair the white mune rides.

My spirit ud darken
The sun in the East
For aye gin my luve
Laid bare her white breist.

A shadaw that derns
In my hert till a sicht
O' Love sends it plingin'
A' else into nicht!

Hugh MacDiarmid
Reprinted with permission from Carcanet Press Ltd.

English transcription

Throw out your shadows over the high hillsides
all ye tall trees where the white moon rides.

My spirit would darken the sun in the East
for ever if my love laid bare her white breast.

A shadow that hides in my heart until a sight
of love sends it plunging everything else into night.

Canasg editors

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