There's a certain slant of light
There's a certain slant of light,
On winter afternoons,
That oppresses, like the weight
Of cathedral tunes.
Heavenly hurt it gives us;
We can find no scar,
But internal difference
Where the meanings are.
None may teach it anything,
'T is the seal, despair, -
An imperial affliction
Sent us of the air.
When it comes, the landscape listens,
Shadows hold their breath;
When it goes, 't is like the distance
On the look of death.
Translation(s): FRE GER
List of language codes
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Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
- by Ernst Bacon (1898 - 1990), "Winter afternoons", published 1971 [SA chorus and piano], from Nature [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]
- by Robert F. Baksa (b. 1938), "There's a certain slant of light", published 1978 [mezzo-soprano, piano], from Emily Dickinson Songs, no. 12. [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]
- by Ronald A. Beckett , "Winter: There’s a certain slant of light", 2006 [voice and piano], from The Seasons: Four Poems of Emily Dickinson, no. 1. [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]
- by Sharon Davis (b. 1937), "There's a certain slant of light", published 1981 [soprano and piano trio], from Three Moods of Emily Dickinson [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]
- by Peter Dickinson (b. 1934), "There's a certain slant of light", published 1974 [AATTBB chorus and contrabass], from the cantata Winter Afternoons [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]
- by Daniel Rogers Pinkham (1923 - 2006), "There's a certain slant of light", published 1974 [medium voice and electronic tape], from Safe in their Alabaster Chambers [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]
- by Richard Pearson Thomas (b. 1957), "There's a certain slant of light", from At last, to be identified, no. 5. [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]
Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):
- FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
- GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , no title, copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:26
Line count: 16
Word count: 76
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- Emily Ezust
Il y a un certain Angle de lumière
Language: French (Français) after the English
Il y a un certain Angle de lumière,
Les Après-midi d'Hiver --
Qui oppresse, comme le Poids
D'Airs de Cathédrale --
Blessé par le Ciel, il nous donne --
Nous ne pouvons voir de cicatrice,
Mais une différence interne --
Où les Significations, sont --
Personne de peut lui apprendre -- Rien --
C'est le Sceau du Désespoir --
Une affliction impériale
Envoyée vers nous par l'Air --
Quand il arrive, le Paysage écoute --
Les Ombres -- retiennent leur souffle --
Quand il s'en va, c'est comme la Distance
Dans le regard de la Mort --
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About the headline (FAQ)
- Translation from English to French (Français) copyright © 2016 by Guy Laffaille, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.
(licenses at lieder dot net)
- a text in English by Emily Dickinson (1830 - 1886), no title, appears in Poems of Emily Dickinson, first published 1890 GER
- This text was set to music by the following composer(s): Ernst Bacon, Robert F. Baksa, Ronald A. Beckett, Sharon Davis, Peter Dickinson, Daniel Rogers Pinkham, Richard Pearson Thomas. Go to the text.
Text added to the website: 2016-11-08.
Last modified: 2016-11-08 17:51:08
Line count: 16
Word count: 84