The Soul's Own Speech by Sarah Palermo published on 2015-05-17T01:47:41Z “The Soul’s Own Speech” is a setting of two anonymous poems. They are unrelated to each other, except in their common theme of how powerful music is. I selected these texts after visiting the Westminster Archives and thumbing through the John Finley Williamson Collection. Containing everything from personal and business letters to drafts of commencement speeches, this collection also has a folder containing articles, poems, and prayers on music and religion that belonged to John Finley Williamson. Whether they were picked out by Dr. Williamson or came into his possession by accident, these two poems can be found, typed one after another, on the same sheet of paper. I do not know what purpose, if any, Dr. Williamson had for these words, but I could think of no better way of honoring him than by setting them together to music. ________ For the common things of every day God gave us speech in the common way For the deeper things we think and feel God gave the poets words to reveal For the heights and depths no word can reach God gave us music, the soul's own speech How many of us ever stop to think of music As a wondrous magic link with God Taking sometimes the place of prayer When words have failed us 'neath a weight of care Music that knows no country, race, no creed But gives to each according to his need .