The first section of this piece is a cappella. Whitacre notates long and sustained notes with text to be spoken at random by each individual singer. Next is a baritone solo which followed by the development of a new a cappella theme. A spoken and arrhythmic incantatory solo with background continues in this section
In the section titled “The Cloudburst”, handbells play as written for 2 bars and then play at random as the choir crescendos into an aleatoric section which signaled by a loud clap of “thunder”. In order to imitate the sound of rain, the choir starts claps, snaps and thigh smacks. The effect of thunderstorms is contributed by a thunder sheet, bass drum, handbells, suspended cymbal, wind chimes and piano. The storm gradually builds then fades, and the ending of the piece mirrors the beginning section, with the choir arpeggiating as the piano voices block chords.