The Metropolitan Tower and Other Songs

Song Cycle by Lori Laitman (b. 1955)

Word count: 477

1. The Metropolitan Tower [sung text checked 1 time]

We walked together in the dusk
To watch the tower grow dimly white,
And saw it lift against the sky
Its flower of amber light.
You talked of half a hundred things,
I kept each hurried word you said;
And when at last the hour was full,
I saw the light turn red.
You did not know the time had come,
You did not see the sudden flower,
Nor know that in my heart Love's birth
Was reckoned from that hour.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

2. A winter night [sung text checked 1 time]

My window-pane is starred with frost,
The world is bitter cold to-night,
The moon is cruel, and the wind
Is like a two-edged sword to smite.

God pity all the homeless ones,
The beggars pacing to and fro.
God pity all the poor to-night
Who walk the lamp-lit streets of snow.

My room is like a bit of June,
Warm and close-curtained fold on fold,
But somewhere, like a homeless child,
My heart is crying in the cold.

Authorship

See other settings of this text.

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

3. Old tunes [sung text checked 1 time]

As the waves of perfume, heliotrope, rose,
Float in the garden when no wind blows,
Come to us, go from us, whence no one knows;
So the old tunes float in my mind,
And go from me leaving no trace behind,
Like fragrance borne on the hush of the wind.
but in the instant the airs remain
I know the laughter and the pain
Of times that will not come again.
I try to catch at many a tune
Like petals of light fallen from the moon,
Broken and bright on a dark lagoon.
But they float away-for who can hold
Youth, or perfume or the moon's gold?

Authorship

See other settings of this text.

Researcher for this text: Dave Evan Thomas

4. The strong house [sung text checked 1 time]

Our love is like a strong house
Well roofed against the wind and rain
Who passes darkly in the sun again and again?
The doors are fast, the lamps are lit,
We sit together talking low
Who is it in the ghostly dusk goes to and fro?
Surely ours is a strong house,
I will not trouble any more
But who comes stealing at midnight
To try the locked door?

Authorship

First published in Pictorial Review, 1919

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

5. The hour [sung text checked 1 time]

Was it foreknown, was it foredoomed
Before I drew my first small breath?
Will it be with me to the end,
Will it go down with me to death?
Or was it chance,
would it have been
Another if it was not you?
Could any other voice or hands
have done for me what yours can do?
Now without sorrow and without elation
I say the day I found you was foreknown,
Let the years blow like sand around that hour,
Changeless and fixed as Memnon carved in stone.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

6. To a loose woman [sung text checked 1 time]

My dear, your face is lovely,
And you have lovely eyes,
I do not cavil at your life,
But only at your lies.
You are not brave,
You are not wild,
You merely ride the crest of fashion;
Ambition is your special ware
And you have dared to call it passion.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]