The Moment of Poetry


An evocative setting of Mark Nepo’s brief and apt poem about poetry itself — as Nepo captures in words the “poetic moment” when a sudden sense turns itself into words, becoming a doorway between who we’ve been and who we are now becoming. The piano is an equal partner in this showpiece of subtlety and nuance for advanced choir and pianist.

A licensed copy is required for each member performing.



I was honored to be Choral Arts Northwest’s composer-in-residence in 2018 at the invitation of Music Director Robert Bode.  The choir had a special friendship with poet Mark Nepo, and I delved deeply into his work to search out “the right” text.  In the end, it was his poem about poetry — “The Moment of Poetry” — that turned out to be a little gem to set. The premiere was given in Seattle on May 5, 2018 along with works of Dominick DiOrio, John David Earnest, Williametta Spencer, and Donald Grantham.
When the sweet ache of being love,
lodged between who you are
and who you will be,
is awakened,
befriend this moment.
It will guide you.
Its sweetness if what holds you.
Its ache is what moves you on.
~Mark Nepo
set with permission of the author

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SATB piano

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