Preface: My Chamber Choir sang this song a few years ago. When I first heard it, I fell in love with the tunes and the lyrics. My director at the time, Mr. Brookins, once asked us to explain what this song meant to us. It has taken me several years to finally grasp what this song really means to me. This song is an explanation to the world on the expression given through music. By realizing that about the lyrics, I understood how perfect this song describes my relationship to music. So read, and enjoy.
This is the best interpretation I could find on YouTube. I have a better recording, but alas I have no way to put it up.
In my heart's sequestered chambers lie truths stripped of poets' gloss
Words alone are vain and vacant, and my heart is mute
In response to aching silence, memory summons half-heard voices
And my soul finds primal eloquence, and wraps me in song
In the secret places of my heart, there are profound truths undecorated by writers' flourishes of language. Mere words cannot describe these thoughts adequately, and my heart is left with no means to describe itself. In response to this painful silence, my mind begins to recall tunes and melodies. And through music, my soul finally discovers the expression it has been missing: expression in song.
If you would comfort me, sing me a lullaby
If you would win my heart, sing me a love song
If you would mourn me and bring me to God,
Sing me a requiem, sing me to Heaven
If you truly wish to comfort me, then sing me a sweet lullaby. If you desire to win over my heart, then sing me a love song. If you feel mournful for me and want my salvation, then sing me a requiem*. You can sing me to Heaven.
Touch in me all love and passion, pain and pleasure
Touch in me grief and comfort, love and passion, pain and pleasure
Sing me a lullaby, a love song, a requiem
Love me, comfort me, bring me to God
Sing me a love song, sing me to Heaven
In order to touch in me all the love and passion, pain and pleasure, or grief and comfort this world has to offer, sing me a lullaby or a love song or a requiem*. Through music you will be able to love me, comfort me, and bring me to God. In song, you can sing my soul to Heaven.
Conclusion: Like I said earlier, this song describes me perfectly. I will rattle on for days on end trying to explain a feeling or a concept or a thought only to wind up short of the full meaning. But there are countless times where I'll turn on a song, point to the stereo, and say, "That is how I feel." The music is enough. The combination of lyrics, melodies, and sound epitomizes what we as humans cannot describe in common language.
There is so much to be said of the poem itself in this song that I've not addressed. So I ask you for your opinion. What is your take on the lyrics and meaning of this song?
*Requiem - (noun) mass for the repose of the souls of the dead; an act or token of remembrance