vignettes - flowers

by Stanley Grill (b. 1953)

Word count: 291
musical settings of poems by William Carlos Williams

for small chorus and viola

1. 10/14 [sung text checked 1 time]

Rose in the park 
with a white center 
blood red
single rose— 

the scraping of
fallen leaves still leaves 
your loveliness 
unshaken

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor]

2. The Petunia [sung text checked 1 time]

Purple!
for months unknown 
but for
the barren sky. 

A purple trumpet 
fragile
as our hopes 
from the very 
sand 
saluting us.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor]

3. A Love Poem [sung text checked 1 time]

Basic hatred 
sometimes has a flower 
pure crystal
a white camellia 

It assumes
the shape of love 
is love
to all appearances

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor]

4. The Chrysanthemum [sung text checked 1 time]

how shall we tell 
the bright petals 
from the sun in the 
sky concentrically 
crowding the branch 
save that it yields
in its modesty
to that splendor?

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor]

5. Black Eyed Susan [sung text checked 1 time]

Black eyed susan 
rich orange
round a purple core

the white daisy 
is not
enough

Crowds are white 
as farmers
who live poorly

But you
are rich
in savagery—

Arab
Indian
dark woman

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor]

6. Chicory [sung text checked 1 time]

Lift your flowers 
on bitter stems 
chicory!
Lift them up 
Out of the scorched ground! 
Bear no foliage
But give yourself
Wholly to that! 
Strain under them
you bitter stems
that no beast eats—
and scorn greyness! 
Into the heat with them: 
cool! 
luxuriant! Sky-blue! 
The earth cracks and 
is shriveled up; 
the wind moans piteously; 
the sky goes out
if you should fail.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor]

7. Approach of Winter [sung text checked 1 time]

The half-stripped trees
struck by a wind together,
bending all,
the leaves flutter drily
and refuse to let go
or driven like hail
stream bitterly out to one side
and fall
where the salvias, hard carmine --
like no leaf that ever was --
edge the bare garden. 

Authorship

See other settings of this text.

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

8. Two Aspects of April - I [sung text checked 1 time]

Nothing is more certain than the flower— 
and best, sometimes, are those
that start into blossom directly from
the harshness of bare gardens—the crocus 
breaking through, narcissi heaving 
a trampled place, and I saw once 
jonquils, forgotten, buried under
a new driveway, covered with broken 
stone
but still unsuppressed, rising still
into a graceful flower-head—

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor]