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Far from love

Word count: 822

Song Cycle by Thomas Pasatieri (b. 1945)

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1. Far from love [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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Far from love the Heavenly Father
Leads the chosen child;
Oftener through realm of briar
Than the meadow mild,

Oftener by the claw of dragon
Than the hand of friend,
Guides the little one predestined
To the native land.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

2. Going to him! Happy Letter! Tell him [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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Going to him! Happy Letter! Tell him -
Tell him the page I didn't write;
Tell him I only said the syntax,
And left the verb and the pronoun out.
Tell him just how the fingers hurried,
Then how they waded, slow, slow, slow;
And then you wished you had eyes in your pages,
So you could see what moved them so.

Tell him it wasn't a practised writer,
You guessed, from the way the sentence toiled;
You could hear the bodice tug, behind you,
As if it held but the might of a child;
You almost pitied it, you, it worked so.
Tell him - No, you may quibble there,
For it would split his heart to know it,
And then you and I were silenter.

Tell him night finished before we finished,
And the old clock kept neighing "day!"
And you got sleepy and begged to be ended -
What could it hinder so, to say?
Tell him just how she sealed you, cautious,
But if he ask where you are hid
Until to-morrow, happy letter!
Gesture, coquette, and shake your head!


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

3. I have no life but this [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): GER

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


I have no life but this,
To lead it here;
Nor any death, but lest
Dispelled from there;

Nor tie to earths to come,
Nor action new,
Except through this extent,
The realm of you.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

4. I live with him, I see his face [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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I live with him, I see his face;
I go no more away
For visitor, or sundown;
Death's single privacy,

The only one forestalling mine,
And that by right that he
Presents a claim invisible,
No wedlock granted me.

I live with him, I hear his voice,
I stand alive to-day
To witness to the certainty
Of immortality

Taught me by Time, - the lower way,
Conviction every day, -
That life like this is endless,
Be judgment what it may.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

5. Let down the bars, O Death [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE GER

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2019, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Let down the bars, O Death!
The tired flocks come in
Whose bleating ceases to repeat,
Whose wandering is done.

Thine is the stillest night,
Thine the [securest]1 fold;
Too near thou art for seeking thee,
Too tender to be told.


View original text (without footnotes)
1 Jordahl: "severest"

Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

6. My cocoon tightens, colors tease [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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My cocoon tightens, colors tease,
I'm feeling for the air;
A dim capacity for wings
Degrades the dress I wear.

A power of butterfly must be
The aptitude to fly,
Meadows of majesty concedes
And easy sweeps of sky.

So I must baffle at the hint
And cipher at the sign,
And make much blunder, if at last
I take the clew divine.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

7. That I did always love [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Que j'ai toujours aimé", copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


That I did always love,
I bring thee proof:
That till I loved
I did not love enough.

That I shall love alway,
I offer thee
That love is life,
And life hath immortality.

This, dost thou doubt, sweet?
Then have I
Nothing to show
But Calvary.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

8. There came a wind like a bugle [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): CAT FRE GER ITA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • CAT Catalan (Català) (Salvador Pila) , "Vingué un vent com un clarí", copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Alors vint un vent comme un clairon", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


There came a wind like a bugle,
It quivered through the grass,
And a green chill upon the heat
So ominous did pass

We barred the windows and the doors
As from an emerald ghost
The doom's electric moccasin
That very instant passed.

On a strange mob of panting trees,
And fences fled away,
And rivers where the houses ran
The living looked that day,

The bell within the steeple wild,
The flying tidings whirled.
How much can come and much can go,
And yet abide the world!


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

9. This was in the white of the year [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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This was in the white of the year,
That was in the green,
Drifts were as difficult then to think
As daisies now to be seen.

Looking back is best that is left,
Or if it be before,
Retrospection is prospect's half,
Sometimes almost more.


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

10. To know just how he suffered would be dear [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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To know just how he suffered would be dear;
To know if any human eyes were near
To whom he could intrust his wavering gaze,
Until it settled firm on Paradise.

To know if he was patient, part content,
Was dying as he thought, or different;
Was it a pleasant day to die,
And did the sunshine face his way?

What was his furthest mind, of home, or God,
Or what the distant say
At news that he ceased human nature
On such a day?

And wishes, had he any?
Just his sigh, accented,
Had been legible to me.
And was he confident until
Ill fluttered out in everlasting well?

And if he spoke, what name was best,
What first,
What one broke off with
At the drowsiest?

Was he afraid, or tranquil?
Might he know
How conscious consciousness could grow,
Till love that was, and love too blest to be,
Meet - and the junction be Eternity?


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

11. You left me, sweet, two legacies [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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You left me - [Sire]1 - two legacies, -
A legacy of love
A Heavenly Father would content,
Had He the offer of;

You left me boundaries of pain
Capacious as the sea,
Between eternity and time,
Your consciousness and me.


View original text (without footnotes)
1 Pasatiri: "sweet"

Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

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