The Housatonic at Stockbridge


The Housatonic River flows through western Massachusetts and western Connecticut. Ives' "The Housatonic at Stockbridge" is the third movement of Three Places in New England of 1914, and Ives arranged this movement as a song for voice and piano (with Johnson's text) in 1921. The hymn "Dorrance," by hymnist Isaac Woodbury can be heard in this song.

--Christie Finn

The Housatonic at Stockbridge

The Housatonic at Stockbridge
Excerpt of text by Robert Underwood Johnson

Contented river! In thy dreamy realm
The cloudy willow and the plumy elm:
Thou beautiful!
From ev'ry dreamy hill
what eye but wanders with thee at thy will,
Contented river!
And yet over-shy
To mask thy beauty from the eager eye;
Hast thou a thought to hide from field and town?
In some deep current of the sunlit brown
Ah! there's a restive ripple,
And the swift red leaves
September's firstlings faster drift;
Wouldst thou away, dear stream?
Come, whisper near!
I also of much resting have a fear:
Let me tomorrow thy companion be,
By fall and shallow to the adventurous sea!

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