A Poet to His Poems


A Poet to His Poems -  (2022)   

Elizabeth Gibson Cheyne

for medium high voice and piano


You are born; you are no more mine:
I have let you go forever.
Demoniac or divine,
You shall sail by sea and river;

You shall walk by road and track;
You shall fly through wind and weather;
But nevermore come back,
That our hearts may laugh together.

2 pages, circa 2' 45"


This text of Elizabeth Gibson Cheyne (1869-1931) is found in Poetry - A Magazine of Verse, Volume 24, No. 4, ed. Harriet Monroe, July 1924. Elizabeth Gibson, married name Cheyne, was the sister of the `War Poet' Wilfred Wilson Gibson (1878-1962), both working in that period of geopolitical upheaval and war. Her reflection of "a poet" is interpreted as set to music, as the work of any artist related to such works as are "born" and then exist independently of the artist. Indeed, one may claim this for other entities as well, from families to businesses to movements.


The two strophes are not symmetrically set, the seeming reprise of the beginning gesture having changed key and coming with only the last two lines, as break from the poem's form, in reflection of that break which occurs for all artists as they let go their work, "born" into the world.



The score is available as a free PDF download, though any major commercial performance or recording of the work is prohibited without prior arrangement with the composer. Click on the graphic below for this art song score.


A Poet to His Poems