Three About Babies


Piano four-hand arrangements sparkle and poetry charms in this three-movement suite for advanced SATB choir (middle movement for SSAA).



Kallman Creates Publications, Composer Daniel Kallman Kallman Creates Publications

SATB, piano four-hands. Duration: 9’00”
The individual movements are also available separately:
I. The Poet and the Baby
II. A Cradle Song (SSAA)
III. The First Tooth

(Note: Score is in manuscript form.)

Listen to “Three About Babies”

Composer’s Notes

These pieces were written for one of the top high school choirs in the country at the time, the Meistersingers of Cherry Creek High School in Englewood, Colorado. They were conducted by Richard Larson, my former high school choir director. The individual titles are: I. The Poet and the Baby; II. A Cradle Song; III. The First Tooth. The first movement is a lively and playful waltz that segues from driving to tender. The middle movement, a lullaby with an extended piano four-hand accompaniment, is for SSAA. The set ends with “The First Tooth,” a sassy, energetic romp. While these works were written for high school singers, they are really at the college or professional level, especially I and III.


I. The Poet and the Baby

How’s a man to write a sonnet, can you tell,—
How’s he going to weave the dim, poetic spell,—
When a–toddling on the floor
Is the muse he must adore,
And this muse he loves, not wisely, but too well?

Now, to write a sonnet, every one allows,
One must always be as quiet as a mouse;
But to write one seems to me
Quite superfluous to be,
When you ‘ve got a little sonnet in the house.

Just a dainty little poem, true and fine,
That is full of love and life in every line,
Earnest, delicate, and sweet,
Altogether so complete
That I wonder what’s the use of writing mine.

–Paul Laurence Dunbar, 1913


II. A Cradle Song

Golden slumbers kiss your eyes,
Smiles awake you when you rise;
Sleep, pretty wantons, do not cry,
And I will sing a lullaby,
Rock them, rock them, lullaby.
Care is heavy, therefore sleep you,
You are care, and care must keep you;
Sleep, pretty wantons, do not cry,
And I will sing a lullaby,
Rock them, rock them, lullaby.

–Thomas Dekker

III. The First Tooth

Through the house what busy joy,
Just because the infant boy
Has a tiny tooth to show!
I have got a double row,
All as white, and all as small;
Yet no one cares for mine at all.
He can say but half a word,
Yet that single sound’s preferred
To all the words that I can say
In the longest summer day.
He cannot walk, yet if he put
With mimic motion out his foot,
As if he thought he were advancing,
It’s prized more than my best dancing.

— Charles and Mary Lamb