Singer/songwriter Steve Bell, and poet Malcolm Guite will be meeting again this summer at the CS Lewis Summer Conference in San Diego, June 21-23.
Among other contributions, the two will together present an evening where they will share from their individual and collaborative efforts.
Malcolm and Steve initially met at the 2011 C.S. Lewis Summer Institute in Oxford and Cambridge (Oxbridge). Steve was so taken by Malcolm’s poetry that he soon after began adapting the poetry for songs which became the basis for his 2012 CD Release Keening for the Dawn.
Taking advantage of this summer’s reunion, Steve and Malcolm will afterward retreat for a few days to collaborate on new material for a future project.
For those interested in taking in this summer’s conference, or the C.S. Lewis Foundation behind the event see: CS Lewis Summer Conference…
Additional conference contributors (authors, novelists, artists etc) include Peter Kreeft, James Como, Paul Ford, Anthony Lawton, Andrew Lazo, Diana Pavlac Glyer, and Richard Platt. See link for details of each: Speakers and Artists…
Below is an example of their collaborations. The spoken word you’ll hear in the middle of the song is Malcolm’s voice. It’s always nice to hear a poem in it’s author’s own voice…
lyric Malcolm Guite music Steve Bell
They sought to soar into the skies
Those classic gods of high renown
For lofty pride aspires to rise
But you came down.
You dropped down from the mountains sheer
Forsook the eagle for the dove
The other Gods demanded fear
But you gave love
Where chiseled marble seemed to freeze
Their abstract and perfected form
Compassion brought you to your knees
Your blood was warm
They called for blood in sacrifice
Their victims on an altar bled
When no one else could pay the price
You died instead
They towered above our mortal plain,
Dismissed this restless flesh with scorn,
Aloof from birth and death and pain,
But you were born.
Born to these burdens, borne by all
Born with us all ‘astride the grave’
Weak, to be with us when we fall,
And strong to save.
Malcolm – on the poem that became the song:
“Milton wrote an Ode on the Morning of Christ’s Nativity, which no one can hope to emulate, but in the following poem I have followed his lead in drawing a contrast between the various gods of the Classical world and the full and astonishing revelation of God’s love in the manger at Bethlehem. This was originally a short three verse poem, but at the behest of Steve Bell I have re-written it so that it is now also a song, with a tune of his composing on his new Album Keening for the Dawn. I have written about our collaboration here.”
reprinted from Malcolm’s Blog