January / Eden Come Slowly

from by The Duke of Norfolk

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The song’s two titles are, respectively, for the new beginning and for the slow hope of some approaching joy. It is the beginning of a story told in reverse and a reminder that the end of one story is always the beginning of another. It is about grief in several forms and is, in part, a rumination on the last two lines of Emily Dickinson’s poem 96 which read ‘Parting is all we know of heaven, / And all we need of hell.’


I spent the evening in reading poems from old lovers.
Emily, again, paints the world in rare-used color.

I dip my glass beneath the spring of this ancient fountain
And sip thy jessamines.
Hidden garden / forbidden mountain.

If I leave, with the ringing bell,
this is all I know of heaven and all I need of hell

Calm the raging storm.
If you can, I’ll give you everything.
Gentle diligence, burning off my unseen offering.

But would I leave if the seas don’t swell?
I'll tell you what I can of heaven and what I must of hell

Now my numb left forearm!
Now the blood in my cheeks!
Causes silent wonder,
growing silent need.

Oh the hope of heaven!
Is this hope I feel?
Still I hear the thunder, and the whimpering.

I spent the evening in.

And I dip my glass again.

Hidden garden / forbidden mountain.


from A Pebble of the Brook, releases July 17, 2020
Written by Adam Howard

Recorded & performed by Adam Howard with the help of:
Eve Goldman - additional vocals
Julia Michel - clarinet
Zach Gerzon - recording engineer for clarinet parts.

Video animation by Adam Howard, coded in js using lottie-web library. The animation can be viewed here: eden.thedukeofnorfolk.com


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The Duke of Norfolk Portland, Oregon

The Duke of Norfolk is a peripatetic singer/songwriter from Oklahoma.

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