for Three SATB choirs, female choir SA
8 mins.
Feb. 2015

awaiting publication by Gonzaga

Commissioned by University of Wisconsin, Whitewater. First performance 24th April 2015.

Setting of a poem by the composer which tells the heartwarming story of Henry Quackenbush (inventor and manufacturer of the Quackenbush air-rifle which was used in all USA shooting galleries, and many other useful items such as patent nutcrackers) and chronicles the rise and fall of his industrial empire. It may also be seen (and heard) as a tongue-in-cheek Marxist view of capitalist enterprise. Or not.


Requiescat in pace . . . Quackenbush!


H. M. Quackenbush – what a hero!

Started off with nothing but zero –

He’s an all-American Emperor Nero.

 Requiescat in pace . . . Quackenbush!


He toiled all day and he toiled all night;

The foundry fires were busy and bright,

And the dollars rolled in at the speed of light –

 Requiescat in pace . . . Quackenbush!


As the years rolled by and the dollars rolled in,

The Quackenbush folks grew rich – as rich as sin.

They wallowed in whisky and they washed in gin.


 Requiescat in pace . . . Quackenbush!


One hundred and forty years have rolled;

The foundry fires lie dead and cold;

The workers long gone, and the factory sold.

 But H. M. Quackenbush

Was buried in a coffin of gold.