Saturday, April 13, 2019

The Dreamer

The Dreamer is a setting of three stanzas of a C.A. Swinburne poem and the third in the set entitled Three Swinburne Songs. They were composed in 1998 and premièred in a concert at McMaster University that year by soprano Elise Bédard and pianist Gloria Saarinen.

Here is a link to an orchestral realization of the song. The cycle, for soprano and piano, is available at from Canadian Music Centre.

The Dreamer

Glad, but not flush'd with gladness,
Since joys go by;
Sad, but not bent with sadness,
Since sorrows die;
Deep in the gleaming glass
She sees all past things pass,
And all sweet life that was lie down and lie.
There glowing ghosts of flowers
Draw down, draw nigh;
And wings of swift spent hours
Take flight and fly;
She sees by formless gleams,
She hears across cold streams,
Dead mouths of many dreams that sing and sigh.
Face fallen and white throat lifted,
With sleepless eye
She sees old loves that drifted,
She knew not why,
Old loves and faded fears
Float down a stream that hears
The flowing of all men's tears beneath the sky.

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