Be Near Me

A setting for unaccompanied Mixed Choir (SATB) or Men's Chorus (TTBB)
of Canto 50 from the poem In Memoriam A.H.H. by Alfred Tennyson

Duration: ca. 5'15"

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Text · Performance History · Purchase Sheet Music

Greg Bartholomew Choral · Be Near Me (Choral Tracks)

The text for Be Near Me is Canto 50 from the poem In Memoriam A.H.H. by the British Poet Laureate Alfred Tennyson (1809 -1892). Published in 1850, the poem is an extended requiem for the poet's beloved friend Arthur Henry Hallam, who died of a cerebral hemorrhage in 1833, age 22. It is considered one of the greatest poems of the 19th Century and was reported to be a great favorite of Queen Victoria.

Alfred Tennyson (1809 -1892)

Canto 50

by Alfred Tennyson

Be near me when my light is low,
When the blood creeps, and the nerves prick
And tingle; and the heart is sick,
And all the wheels of Being slow.

Be near me when the sensuous frame
Is racked with pangs that conquer trust;
And Time, a maniac scattering dust,
And Life, a Fury slinging flame.

Be near me when my faith is dry,
And men the flies of latter spring,
That lay their eggs, and sting and sing
And weave their petty cells and die.

Be near me when I fade away,
To point the term of human strife,
And on the low dark verge of life
The twilight of eternal day.

Purchase Sheet Music

Sheet music for Be Near Me is available from: J.W. Pepper

Performance History

June 10, 2023: Premiere performance by Serenade Chamber Choir at the Old First Church, San Francisco, California. Watch the premiere performance on YouTube.