Jonathan Santore, Composer
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Mary’s First Lullaby


Listen to an excerpt at Yelton Rhodes Music.

  • For SATB chorus and piano OR cello
  • Sacred text (Christmas)
  • 3:00
  • Difficulty rating (1-5): 3
  • Published by Yelton Rhodes Music, Inc. (catalog listing)

Though I had always considered myself a passionate person, I never knew how fiercely I could love someone until I became a parent. At that time, I also gained a more visceral understanding of the parental metaphors that make up the Christian tradition. This piece is about a first-time mother experiencing the awakening of that fierce love, a mother who‘s heard some confusing things about her newborn son, who’s looking forward to the days ahead—a mother who has no idea of what lies before her. Mary’s First Lullaby is dedicated to my wife and children.

Mary’s First Lullaby

For nine long months I’ve waited, dear,
And I’m so glad you’re finally here!
But Mommy heard the strangest thing –
An angel said you’d be a king.

They’ll sing hosanna from the rooftops,
They’ll sing hosanna to the skies –
I sing hosanna for the mother love
Shining in your open eyes.

Sing hosanna! Sing hosanna! Sing hosanna!

Your cousin leapt up in the womb
When you and I walked in the room …
So much that I can’t figure out …
Your entire foot fits in my mouth!

They’ll sing hosanna for the healing,
They’ll sing hosanna for the light –
I sing hosanna for your tiny hands
And the joy I feel this night.

Sing hosanna! Sing hosanna! Sing hosanna!

You’ll like it there in Nazareth –
Back home we’ll get to catch our breath!
There’s things to learn, and games to play,
And hugs until you go away.

They’ll sing hosanna for your calling,
They’ll sing hosanna for the sign –
I sing hosanna for these precious years
And the time that you are mine.

Sing hosanna! Sing hosanna! Sing hosanna!

—Jonathan Santore

Text Copyright ©2010 by Yelton Rhodes Music, Inc. Reprinted by permission.

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