Get Business Card

Return to AndHow Arts Home Page

Return to beginning Sound Page

Go to Composition by Date Menu

Go to Compositions Menu Listed Alphabetically


Seven Songs on Poems of Ronald Cassetti- 1979

(mezzo-soprano voice, violin, piano & [tri,tamb,claves])

- song cycle

Music by: Andrew Thomas
Poems by:
Ronald Cassetti

Information through: American Composers Alliance

Copyright © 1979


First the wind.
You shiver moving.
White. across. inside.
The earth has no mind:
Your feet stick to it.
Ice. metal. noise.
In the middle of the night there are signs.



If it doesn't stop raining
The river will rise and swallow
My world,
And I shall be lost because
The instructions to build the Ark
Haven't reached me yet;
Because the telephone lines
Are down,
And the streams are swollen
And the geese have flown
Out of the sky.



They tell me my father died
Following the gentle admonition
To my mother not to be so alarmed;
And settling back to his pillow,
He smiled benign relief to comfort,
And stared past her
Into another world.



E. Power Biggs id dead,
Dead is E. Power Biggs.
Is dead Biggs
E. Power?
Power Biggs is E.

Power dead is Biggs E.
Dead is Biggs, E. Power;
Is Biggs, E. Power Dead?
Biggs. E. Power dead is.

Dead Power, E. Biggs is
Dead E., Power Biggs is
Dead Biggs, E. Power is
Dead is, dead Power, dead Biggs.

Epow Erbig gisde Ad,
De adis Epo werb Iggs:



O Theban night:
A dark for once morningless
In seeming duration
Without breeze
To soothe the soak of passion
Which burst as perals
Uopn the brow of Laius
As he attended upon her
That fated starless hour;
Twixt the world
And the gods unseen
When dice were cast
Upon the clouds
To clap upon our ears
The terror of thunder without light,
The alarm of warning
Jocasta scarcely heard;
A signal prior to
The Oracle's curious tongue,
Before the fatal forkèd road,
Bewfore Sphynx, plague and riddle,
Before the golden pin's stab
Erased in vain, the imagery
Of the infected bed,
While her eyes rushed red
In horror of comprehension,
Her memory doomed
To recapitulation
From the warning hint
Of dark ecstasy insistent,
When thrusting Laius
Upon her splendor spread
Gave up the sensate to blood's boil,
And in blind reflexity
Shot her through with future;
As she to he boundless,
Mind bindings freed,
Broke boundries
And screamed sightless
Into her eternity.


Were we in the last age
We would have much to say,
And at the edge of our tongue
To say it bright and resolute;
Said at the edge of a lake perhaps,
Or on the edge of the vision of cities.

Oh, we would weep as we sing,
At once counting, I suppose,
All our riches and wretchedness
By now muddled in confusion,
For we have more past than future
And feel the cold upon our face.

We face time's window with winter there,
Bright with invitation forbidding:
Ice, Ice! The sun's upon it:
Calamity is in time's maze.



The lutenist plies the serial strings,
Fingers to the spidery spin of sound,
Thin as sparse in time and soft as dim;
While below him the lake's linear glints
Exchange direction and etched lines swim,
Cross-hatching the sky and now with sound
On shore; a watered-silk for ear and eye,
Conclude the day sonic in light's allure,
Slapping softly opon the remembered earth

- from Reconsiderations Forty-Nine Poems (1977)
& Men and Mountains Fifty-Four Poems (1978)

Ronald Cassetti

Premiere: Jenneke Barton at Carnegie Recital Hall
Also: Craftsbury VT