I Will Breath a Mountain: A Song Cycle from American Women Poets

Song Cycle by William Bolcom (b. 1938)

Word count: 1214

1. Pity me not because the light of day [sung text checked 1 time]

Pity me not because the light of day
At close of day no longer walks the sky;
Pity me not for beauties passed away
From field and thicket as the the year goes by;
Pity me not the waning of the moon,
Nor that the ebbing tide goes out to sea,
Nor that a man's desire is hushed so soon,
And you no longer look with love on me.
This have I known always: Love is no more
Than the wide blossom which the wind assails,
Than the great tide that treads the shifting shore,
Strewing fresh wreckage gathered in the gales:
Pity me that the heart is slow to learn
What the swift mind beholds at ever turn. 

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2. How to swing those obbligatos around [sung text checked 1 time]

He had shag hair & a boutique
 [ ... ]

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3. The crazy woman [sung text checked 1 time]

I shall not sing a May song
 [ ... ]

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4. Just once [sung text checked 1 time]

Just once I knew what life was for
 [ ... ]

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5. Never more will the wind [sung text checked 1 time]

Never more will the wind
cherish you again,
never more will the rain.

Never more
shall we find you bright
in the snow and wind.

The snow is melted,
the snow is gone,
and you are flown:

Like a bird out of our hand,
like a light out of our heart,
you are gone.

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6. The sage [sung text checked 1 time]

The cat is eating the roses
 [ ... ]

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7. O to be a dragon [sung text checked 1 time]

If I, like Solomon,
 [ ... ]

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8. The bustle in a house [sung text checked 1 time]

The bustle in a house
The morning after death
Is solemnest of industries
Enacted upon earth, -

The sweeping up the heart,
And putting love away
We shall not want to use again
Until eternity.

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

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2021, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

9. I saw Eternity [sung text checked 1 time]

O beautiful Forever!
 [ ... ]

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10. Night practice [sung text checked 1 time]

will/ remember
 [ ... ]

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11. The fish [sung text checked 1 time]

I caught a tremendous fish
 [ ... ]

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