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I. Dawn 05:58
II. Hope 07:07
 

Liner Notes

The texts of the two movements of Meditations at the Time of the New Year are drawn from parts of various creative silent meditations that typically supplement the Rosh Hashana liturgy in many Reform synagogue services. The first movement, Dawn, is basically contemplative in its overall mood. Renewal—one of the principal spiritual themes in the liturgy of Rosh Hashana—is expressed with transparent but judiciously layered textures. The second movement, Hope, is more forceful, progressing from dense clusters to uplifting chords, especially at the words “Glory to those who hope.” This spirit of optimism, too, is one of the Jewish New Year’s dominant liturgical sentiments. The piece concludes with a calm coda that recalls the ambience of reverential prayer, its words taken from a well-known English translation in classical Reform liturgy: “May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable to Thee, O Lord.”

A subtle and sparsely scored percussion accompaniment features bell sounds on glockenspiel and chimes. Meditations was commissioned by the Concert Choir of Skidmore College and was composed in 1997.


 

Lyrics

MEDITATIONS

I. DAWN

Every dawn renews.
Vast radiance and secret wonder fill the world

The stars of heaven,
The elements, arrayed in perfection,
These are awesome in their majesty—marvels, yet never greater than the mind who beholds them.

Just as the hand, held before the eye, can hide the tallest mountain,
This miracle, matter, begets a wonder: the body thinks; insight comes from flesh; the soul is born of dust to build towers of hope, to open within us doors of love.

Vast radiance and secret wonder fill the world.
Space...Time, without end—eternity.

There is a grace that every dawn renews,
A loveliness in every morning fresh ...every morning, every ...

The world is not mere fate....(Every dawn renews.)

II. HOPE

Glory to those who hope!
For the future is theirs;
...Hear the sound of joy and gladness; let us exult!

Glory to those who hope!
For the future is theirs;
We love dawn as a promise....

We rejoice in the light, we rejoice in the day.
We rejoice in the beauty of the earth
In the love of family we rejoice.
We rejoice, and shall rejoice for evermore.
—Glory to those who hope!

Join hands, trust in creation—Forge, then, a vision of things to come.

A great hope shall be fulfilled.
There will be peace in the land, we shall be unafraid.

There will be peace in the land.
(Glory to those who hope! )

May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable unto Thee, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer. Amen.


 

Credits

Composer: Judith Zaimont

Length: 13:05

Performers: Timm Boatman, Tubular Bells;  Choral Society of Southern CaliforniaMartha Cowan, Soprano;  Theresa Diamond, Glockenspiel;  Nick Strimple, Conductor;  Kimball Wheeler, Mezzo-soprano

Date Recorded: 05/01/1999
Venue: Beverly Hills Presbyterian Church, Beverly Hills, California
Engineer: Beecher, Tony
Assistant Engineer: Lang Zaimont, Judith

Additional Credits:

Publisher: Judith Lang Zaimont
Texts from Gates of Repentance: The New Union Prayerbook for the Days of Awe.
Central Conference of American Rabbis, New York, 1978. Concept and assemblage by the composer.

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