I found this community after friending redqueenofevil (*waves*), and I had just posted the following in my personal journal. I'm hoping you guys could offer some opinions.
I play piano at a small Unitarian congregation in Studio City, California. The musical director has agreed to have the choir sing hymns I've been writing/arranging.
I was reading "Home with God", a book by one of my favorite writers, Neale Donald Walsch. At the end, he has what I assumed was a poem/lyrics written by him, and as I was reading it, a melody just sort of popped into my head, as they tend to do. I ran to the piano and sketched the framework for a hymn/choral piece, and I've been idly working on it for the past week or so. I started to enter it into Sibelius yesterday with the intention of finishing it, printing the score out, and having the choir at church sing it, with me accompanying on piano, as sort of a test drive before I give them the "real" hymn I've been writing, with both words and music by me. I decided to google the lyrics quickly to see who wrote them, and it turns out it's actually a very famous song - "The Impossible Dream" from "Man of La Mancha." I listened to an mp3 of Peter O'Toole singing it, and I instantly recognize the melody and music. The words fit perfectly, of course...but they also fit perfectly with the song that I wrote! Do you think they are too famous of lyrics to adapt into a new setting?
To fight the unbeatable foe
To bear with unbearable sorrow
To run where the brave dare not go
To right the unrightable wrong
To love pure and chaste from afar
To try when your arms are too weary
To reach the unreachable star
This is my quest
To follow that star
No matter how hopeless
No matter how far
To fight for the right
Without question or pause
To be willing to march into Hell
For a heavenly cause
And I know if I'll only be true
To this glorious quest
That my heart will lie peaceful and calm
When I'm laid to my rest
And the world will be better for this
That one man, scorned and covered with scars
Still strove with his last ounce of courage
To reach the unreachable star"
Keep in mind that many of the members of the choir are very old and most likely remember this song very well.