In this hymn-like song, Moerane adapts a poem by Lesotho writer Bennett Khaketla (1913-2000) that describes the way light creeps into the deep valleys and gorges (likhohlo) created by Lesotho’s towering mountain range, the Maluti. The ‘easterly wind’ and the ‘dew settled like diamonds’ in the lyrics of Likhohlo suggests sunrise rather than sunset, and summer rather than winter. Clearly then, the poem is not just about gorges (valleys) but also about the beauty of nature at dawn when ‘the birdsong is simply breath-taking’ (kahohle linonyana li omisa mathe). As if anticipating the reverence of the last line, the music is gentle, regular in phrasing, and uses simple diatonic harmonies. In order to help choirs learn this song, a free mp3 of the lyrics spoken by Mpho Ndebele is downloadable when the song is purchased along with a rehearsal mp3 of the song at a slow tempo.
The audio sample below was generated from the Sibelius file of the score and the image on the right shows the first page of the score.