Variations on ‘Lost Love’

Variations on ‘Lost Love’2019-10-09T22:27:27+00:00

Project Description

Marimba
1997
15 min.

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Mark Ford, marimba
On the album Motion Beyond

 

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Written for

Leigh Howard Stevens

Commissioned by

the New York State Music Teachers Association

Description

Variations on Lost Love is based upon the poem “Lost Love” by English poet Robert Graves. The poem describes “a person so distraught by lost love that he enters a state of hyper-awareness”. The poem reads:

His eyes are quickened so with grief
He can watch a grass or leaf
Every instant grow; he can
Clearly through a flint wall see
Or watch the startled spirit flee
From the throat of a dead man.
Across two counties he can hear
And catch your words before you speak.
The woodlouse of the maggot’s weak
Clamour rings in his sad ear,
And noise so slight it would surpass
Credence – drinking sound of grass,
Worm talk, clashing jaws of moth
Chumbling holes in cloth;
The groan of ants who undertake
Gigantic loads for honour’s sake
(Their sinews creak, their breath comes thin);
Whir of spiders when they spin,
And minute whispering, mumbling, sighs
Of idle grubs and flies.
This man is so quickened with grief,
He wanders god-like or like thief
Inside and out, below, above,
Without relief seeking lost love.

 

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