The Child Comes Every Winter
SATB and piano (1999)

3 min.


Lyrics by William Zinsser

Biscardi Music Press No. B48-99/01-1
Classical Vocal Reprints No. CVR3616: Print / Digital

The Child Comes Every Winter, for SATB and piano (1999/2001), is an arrangement of an earlier version for solo voice and piano written in the spring of 1999 at the Liguria Center for the Arts and Humanities in Bogliasco, Italy. It is dedicated to Ariana Tamar Goldsworthy. As a solo it was written to complete and come at the end of a set of Christmas carols beginning with At Christmas Time (December 19, 1917; in C Major), by Otto Luening and Hermann Hesse, and followed by Charles Ives' A Christmas Carol (December 1894; in F Major). The entire set is entitled Winter's Child: Three American Carols and is, in part, unified by an overall harmonic structure. The Child Comes Every Winter is in A Major and in its accompaniment slightly borrows from voicings and a rhythmic motive in the Ives. What is sadness in the Luening becomes poignancy in the Ives, and hopefulness and sadness are contrasted in the lyrics and the music of The Child Comes Every Winter.


The child comes ev'ry winter
To tell us the amazing news:
Hope is born in Bethlehem.

The star comes ev'ry winter
To tell us where to find the boy.
Come, it says, to Bethlehem,
Come in peace and joy.

The three kings come ev'ry winter,
Far away they heard a call:
Wise men, wise enough to know
That the child is the wisest one of all.

Ev'ry year the same story,
But the story's always new.
Always too good to be true.
(But it's true).
Winter's child is born for you.

The child comes ev'ry winter
To tell us the amazing news.

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