The Music of Elizabeth Alexander

On the Edge of the Water

An allegory on life’s beauty, transience, and everlasting nature

Words by Elizabeth Alexander

An allegory about the excitement, pain and transience of life, as experienced by a single drop of water. The open-hearted wonder and directness of this ballad are enhanced by a piano accompaniment that sparkles with delight.

Vocal Range: g#-c#”

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On the Edge of the Water

Somewhere there’s a little Child on the edge of the water.
The Water is big, the Water is deep, the Water is One.
Somewhere there’s a little Child on the edge of the water.
Where there’s water and children, there will be fun.

The Child sees possibility from the edge of the Water.
The Water says “Oh,” the Water says “My,” the Water says, “Yes.”
The Child sees something dancing, something sparkling, something full of mystery:
It’s almost like the Water is alive.

Every day and night the Child is kicking up the Water,
Kicking up the water with abandon in her eye.
Sending drops and droplets brightly soaring through the open air,
They are flying on the wild ride of their life.

Some fly wide and far and high,
Savoring each moment, and welcoming every dawn.
Some are hardly made before they’re gone —
That’s how it happens.
Just how it happens.

All we know and all we are is drops of the Water,
Catching the light and holding it in our mirrors for a time.
Against our skin we feel it: all that open air.
We are flying, we are flying, we are flying —
Until we fall back down into the Water.

Somewhere there’s a little Child on the edge of the water —
Just loving the Water…

Elizabeth Alexander
© 2009 by Elizabeth Alexander

Performers

Performers

Premiere: Kristina Armetta and Elizabeth Alexander (Portland, OR)
Kathleen Humphrey and Elizabeth Alexander (St. Paul, MN)
Kathy Lee and Elizabeth Alexander (St. Paul, MN)
Linda Jo Reinhard (Beaverton, OR)