White Moth

  • Duration: 9 minutes
  • Chorus: SATB
  • Instrumentation: Harp, small string orchestra
  • Published by: Hawes Music

Based on a new poem by Andrew Hawes, the SATB choir, together with strings and harp, bring to life the calm and refreshing atmosphere of the Norfolk Broads and the elegant, majestic wherries of old.  Commissioned to commemorate the centenary of the Wherry Yacht White Moth and premiered in Ranworth Church July 2015 with White Moth moored yards away.

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O Bure you flow as the heron waits;
Slow and sure, deep and pure:
Carrying time to time you flow
Who could tell all you see or know?

Now propellers churn and turn you;
Countless craft for leisure use you,
But there was a quiet time;
And your burdens more refined.

Once when men were off to war,
With fear and terror all abroad,
In Wroxham, where you hide your bream,
A boat was born from skill and dreams.

A hundred years of tides and change
Have in you countless times exchanged,
Since ‘White Moth’ was launched on you
Of ancient lines for purpose new.

She was not made to carry coal
Or sugar beet in her wide hold.
But, to be filled with homely joy
Was to be her own employ.

Words: Andrew Hawes (1954 –   )

White Moth, with her swan-like sail,
Herself can tell you many a tale;
Of how once or twice she nearly drowned
And as a houseboat she was found.

Now she is a century young,
Her new life has just begun;
To gently push yourself aside
In gentle waves, her sail flung wide.

Into the future she sails on
An ancient promise forever young;
Renewed by every breath of wind
Which in her lofty rigging sings.

Into the future she sails away
To run on you another day.
With renewed hope and purpose strong
To our century – she belongs.

O Bure you flow as the heron waits;
Slow and sure, deep and pure:
Carrying time to time you flow
Who could tell all you see or know?

Wherry yachts (L-R) White Moth, Olive and Norada on Ranworth Broad.  Photo: Courtesy of the Broads Authority

Wherry yachts (L-R) White Moth, Olive and Norada on Ranworth Broad. Photo: Courtesy of the Broads Authority

2016-12-02T08:33:26+00:00