A song appears in chapter six of Morris's The Well at World's End, and like so many of Morris's poems, the words suggest a rhythm and melody right from the first verse :
Art thou man, art thou maid, through the long grass a-going?
For short shirt thou bearest, and no beard I see,
And the last wind ere moonrise about thee is blowing.
Would'st thou meet with thy maiden or look'st thou for me?”
Happily, someone has heard the cry of Morris's poetry, and set it to music. The Kurt Henry Band includes this very song, titled “An Evensong of Upmeads”, on their album, Heart Mind & All.
“Unlike musical settings of Morris I have heard,” Kurt Henry explained, “this setting is more folkloric and natural--I like to believe that Morris would approve. … I believe Morris scholar Fred Kirchhoff complimented me on this in a demo I sent him years before I seriously recorded it. I would be very pleased if society members heard this recording. It truly evokes the fresh, new (if nostalgic) world of the Morris romance. So yes, Morris IS available on iTunes.”
(Image: Age-old music from the Cantigas de Santa Maria Manuscript)