Bude Zima/Krásný Máj
To hear and see the score, click here for the YouTube score video.
Bude Zima is a Czech folk song that I learned when I served as a missionary for my church in 1996. The words are:
Bude zima, bude mráz!
Kam se, ptáčko, kam schováš?
"Schovám já se do lesa.
To je moje potěcha."
Cold is coming, there will be frost!
Where, little bird, will you hide?
"I will hide in the forest.
It is my consolation."
When I decided to set it for choir, I looked for something to pair it with. I found an epic poem by Czech poet Karel Hynek Mácha and extracted a few lines from it and created a new melody that matched the quality of Bude Zima.
Krásný máj uplynul, pohynul jarní květ,
a léto vzplanulo; - pak letní přešel čas,
podzim i zima též i jarno vzešlo zas;
až mnohá leta již přenesl času let.
from Máj by Karel Mácha
Beautiful May is passed, withered the bloom of Spring;
The summer fire burns high, wanes, and as soon is gone,
Autumn, and winter after; another Spring comes on,
As time bears off the years on its unresting wing.
translation by Edith Pargeter
The result was an amazing pairing of the winter and the other seasons as the song becomes a tribute to the passing years. Set for SATB choir, oboe, cello, chimes, and woodblock. First performed by the University of Memphis Chamber Choir in April 2005.