Eight Fragments from Shelley

Song Cycle by George Antheil (1900 - 1959)

Word count: 546

1. When soft winds [sung text not yet checked]

When soft winds and sunny skies
With the green earth harmonize,
And the young and dewy dawn,
Bold as an unhunted fawn,
Up the windless heaven is gone, --
Laugh--for ambushed in the day, --
Clouds and whirlwinds watch their prey.

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

  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "Quando venti leggeri e cieli luminosi", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

2. To the moon [sung text not yet checked]

Bright wanderer, fair coquette of Heaven,
To whom alone it has been given
To change and be adored for ever,
Envy not this dim world, for never
But once within its shadow grew
One fair as --

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Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

3. When the lamp is shattered [sung text not yet checked]

When the lamp is shattered
The light in the dust lies dead--
When the cloud is scattered
The rainbow's glory is shed.
When the lute is broken,  
Sweet tones are remembered not;
When the lips have spoken,
Loved accents are soon forgot.

As music and splendour
Survive not the lamp and the lute, 
The heart's echoes render
No song when the spirit is mute: --
No song but sad dirges,
Like the wind through a ruined cell,
Or the mournful surges 
That ring the dead seaman's knell.

When hearts have once mingled
Love first leaves the well-built nest;
The weak one is singled
To endure what it once possessed. 
O Love! who bewailest
The frailty of all things here,
Why choose you the frailest
For your cradle, your home, and your bier?

Its passions will rock thee 
As the storms rock the ravens on high;
Bright reason will mock thee,
Like the sun from a wintry sky.
From thy nest every rafter
Will rot, and thine eagle home 
Leave thee naked to laughter,
When leaves fall and cold winds come.

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

  • CZE Czech (Čeština) (Jaroslav Vrchlický) , "Verše ", Prague, J. Otto, first published 1901

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

4. Dirge [sung text not yet checked]

Rough wind that moanest loud,
Grief too sad for song;
Wild wind when sullen cloud
Knells all [the]1 night long;
Sad storm, whose tears are vain,
Bare woods whose branches strain,
Deep caves and dreary main,
Wail! for the world's wrong.

Authorship

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

  • CZE Czech (Čeština) (Jaroslav Vrchlický) , "Nářek", Prague, J. Otto, first published 1901
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2017, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

View original text (without footnotes)
1 omitted by Ives.

Researcher for this text: Ted Perry

5. To-morrow [sung text not yet checked]

Where art thou, beloved To-morrow?
When young and old, and strong and weak,
Rich and poor, through joy and sorrow,
Thy sweet smiles we ever seek, --
In thy place--ah! well-a-day! 
We find the thing we fled--To-day.

Authorship

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

  • CZE Czech (Čeština) (Jaroslav Vrchlický) , "Zítra", Prague, J. Otto, first published 1901

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

6. Sonnet to Byron [sung text not yet checked]

I am afraid these verses will not please you, but
If I esteemed you less, Envy would kill
Pleasure, and leave to Wonder and Despair
The ministration of the thoughts that fill
The mind which, like a worm whose life may share
A portion of the unapproachable,  
Marks your creations rise as fast and fair
As perfect worlds at the Creator's will.

But such is my regard that nor your power
To soar above the heights where others [climb],
Nor fame, that shadow of the unborn hour 
Cast from the envious future on the time,
Move one regret for his unhonoured name
Who dares these words: -- the worm beneath the sod
May lift itself in homage of the God.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

7. I faint, I perish [sung text not yet checked]

I faint, I perish with my love! I grow
Frail as a cloud whose splendours pale
Under the evening's ever-changing glow:
I die like mist upon the gale,
And like a wave under the calm I fail.

Authorship

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

  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "Io vengo meno, muoio", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

8. I stood upon a heaven-cleaving turret [sung text not yet checked]

I stood upon a heaven-cleaving turret
Which overlooked a wide Metropolis --
And in the temple of my heart my Spirit
Lay prostrate, and with parted lips did kiss
The dust of Desolations [altar] hearth -- 
And with a voice too faint to falter
It shook that trembling fane with its weak prayer
'Twas noon,--the sleeping skies were blue
The city

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]