When the south wind sings -- 7 Songs for Soprano and Piano on Poems by Carl Sandburg

Song Cycle by Juliana Hall (b. 1958)

Word count: 458

1. Follies [sung text checked 1 time]

       Shaken,
The blossoms of lilac,
    And shattered,
The atoms of purple.
Green dip the leaves,
    Darker the bark,
Longer the shadows.

Sheer lines of poplar
Shimmer with masses of silver
And down in a garden old with years
And broken walls of ruin and story,
Roses rise with red rain-memories.
       May!
    In the open world
The sun comes and finds your face,
    Remembering all.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: David Sims [Guest Editor]

2. Mask [sung text checked 1 time]

Fling your red scarf faster and faster, dancer.
It is summer and the sun loves a million green leaves, masses of green.
Your red scarf flashes across them calling and a-calling.
The silk and flare of it is a great soprano leading a chorus
Carried along in a rouse of voices reaching for the heart of the world.
Your toes are singing to meet the song of your arms:

Let the red scarf go swifter.
Summer and the sun command you.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: David Sims [Guest Editor]

3. Pearl fog [sung text checked 1 time]

    Open the door now.
Go roll up the collar of your coat
To walk in the changing scarf of mist.

Tell your sins here to the pearl fog
And know for once a deepening night
Strange as the half-meanings
Alurk in a wise woman’s mousey eyes.

    Yes, tell your sins
And know how careless a pearl fog is
Of the laws you have broken.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: David Sims [Guest Editor]

4. The south wind says so [sung text checked 1 time]

If the oriole calls like last year
when the south wind sings in the oats,
if the leaves climb and climb on a bean pole
saying over a song learnt from the south wind,
if the crickets send up the same old lessons
found when the south wind keeps on coming,
we will get by, we will keep on coming,
we will get by, we will come along,
we will fix our hearts over,
the south wind says so.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: David Sims [Guest Editor]

5. Under the harvest moon [sung text checked 1 time]

  Under the harvest moon,
When the soft silver
Drips shimmering
Over the garden nights,
Death, the gray mocker,
Comes and whispers to you
As a beautiful friend
Who remembers.
 
  Under the summer roses
When the flagrant crimson
Lurks in the dusk
Of the wild red leaves,
Love, with little hands,
Comes and touches you
With a thousand memories,
And asks you
Beautiful, unanswerable questions.

Authorship

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Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

6. Child moon [sung text checked 1 time]

The child’s wonder
At the old moon
Comes back nightly.
She points her finger
To the far silent yellow thing
Shining through the branches
Filtering on the leaves a golden sand,
Crying with her little tongue, “See the moon!”
And in her bed fading to sleep
With babblings of the moon on her little mouth.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: David Sims [Guest Editor]

7. Between two hills [sung text checked 1 time]

Between two hills
The old town stands.
The houses loom
And the roofs and trees
And the dusk and the dark,
The damp and the dew
  Are there.

The prayers are said
And the people rest
For sleep is there
And the touch of dreams
  Is over all.

Authorship

See other settings of this text.

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]