Preserve the Dead: Thomas Weelkes (Oct 25, 1576 – Nov 30, 1623)
I learned of this song in a course I took on Music History. When I listen to voices blending and dancing together like this, I have to believe in the goodness of what it means to be alive on Earth.
As Vesta was from Latmos hill descending
She spied a maiden Queen the same ascending,
Attended on by all the shepherds’ swain;
To whom Diana’s darlings came running down amain
First two by two, then three by three together
Leaving their Goddess all alone, hasted thither;
And mingling with the shepherds of her train,
With mirthful tunes her presence did entertain.
Then sang the shepherds and nymphs of Diana:
Long live fair Oriana!
Source: Kerman, Joseph and Gary Tomlinson. Listen. Brief Fourth Edition. Boston & New York: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2000. Pg. 75. CD 1, track 13. Retrieved from: http://departments.ozarks.edu/hfa/slgorman/renaissance_madrigal_lyrics.htm