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I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day


Music by John Baptiste Calkin (1863)
Poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1872)

(Cambridge, Mass.) On December 25, 1863, Henry Longfellow listened to the Christmas bells as his son lay at his side gravely wounded from a confederate bullet. In the midst of a bloody civil war with cannons blazing, he wondered how the bells could ring of "Peace on earth, good will to men" when many young men would never come home at all!

Then Longfellow realized that everyone most needed the bells to ring and affirm peace and love where there was war and hate!

Through delicate chromatic harmonies and subtle counterpoint, this arrangement brings out the deeper layers of faith over fear, hope over despair.

Code: CBCD

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