Tuesday, 25 November 2014

continents of sound

I performed the following poems in my last piano recital continents of sound in Stanford last month in the Western Cape. It is a series of poems that I have been using in some of my other recitals in collaboration with other musicians - clarinetist Morné  van Heerden, cellist Francois le Roux and flutist Thomas de Bruin. These poems have given the recitals a strong sense of cohesion and drama. Personally I think the words have a wonderful way to balance the intensity of the musical moments. I have received very inspiring feedback on the poems. They have been coming a long way with me -  each one has its own story and inspiration. They have been flashes of lightning as well as globes of grapes in my mouth. They have given me strength with each performance. It has been very fulfilling to realise just how closely woven my poetry and music can be at times. I thought it is now a good time to publish them here. 

I indicate the piano pieces to give an idea of the music that I played in continents of sound.

 >>> Improvisation <<<

1.

Nuwe Aarde

dit is daar waar ek wil wees
daar waar kontinente van klank
uit my keel en vingers vloei
en ek aan 'n hele
nuwe aarde geboorte gee

New Earth

that is where I want to be
there where continents of sound
flow from my throat and fingers
and i give birth
to a whole new earth

>>> Beethoven Sonata <<<

2.

boorling van hierdie klank-aarde

my vingers omvou elke vou en hoek
van die klank se lyf
voel sonder om te sien
die glans
die deining
die gly kontoere
van toon-organika
wat in die hemelvuur
tot
boorling van hierdie klank-aarde
gelouter word

inhabitant of this sound-earth

my fingers fold over every fold and corner
of the body of sound
feel without seeing
the shining
the undulation
the smooth contours
of tone-organica
that is fired in heaven's flame
into inhabitant of this sound-earth

 >>> Schubert Impromptu <<<

3.

o, Musiek

dit is waar klanke gebore word met aardse lywe
en ons die herinnering van premordiale frekwensies
in ons honger ore kan hoor sing
en die hart kan net juig oor musiek
wat so diep tref

oh, Music

this is where sounds are born with earthly bodies
and we can hear the memory of primordial frequencies
sing in our hungry ears
and the heart can only rejoice over music
that strikes so deeply

 >>> Debussy Clair de Lune <<<

4.

ryp druiwe

die musiek-klanke val
soos
ryp druiwe
uit
die lug
vol trosse kom lê soet-soelig diep binne my oor
draai om en om in
'n hemelse taai mallemeul
in die ingewandes
van
my siel
die rillings breek uit oor my kopvel
en die toppe van my skouers
ek is bang as
die stilte
gaan kom
ah, om verewig in die hand van klank te lê
daar waar dit resonerend warm is
vat my nie weg van hierdie klank!
kom musiek,
kom val
soos ryp druiwe
in my oor
bederf my
met
'n oomblikse versadiging
van
hierdie
nimmereindigende
honger

ripe grapes

the sounds of music fall
like
ripe grapes
from
the sky
full bunches come lie sweet-sultrily deep inside my ear
turn round and round in
a heavenly merry-go-round
in the guts
of
my soul
the thrills break out over my head
and on the tops of my shoulders
i am scared when
the silence
will descend
ah, to lie forever in the hand of sound
there where it is so resonantly warm
take me not away from this sound!
come music,
come fall
like ripe grapes
in my ear
spoil me
with
a momentary satiation
of
this
neverending
hunger

>>> Granados Playera <<<

5.

uit die resonante holtes van lyf

uit die resonante holtes van lyf
breek die stem oop
en sing oor die ganse aarde
die lied wat
in drome klink
deur skeure breek
en
in murg gaan sit
en nie laat los
totdat dit lyf vervorm tot
transendentale beswyming

from the resonant cavities of body

from the resonant cavities of body
breaks open the voice
and sings over the whole earth
the song that
sounds in dreams
breaks through the cracks
and
clings onto the marrow
and does not let go
until it reforms body into
one transcendental swoon

 >>> Improvisation <<< 

>>> Chopin Polonaise <<<

6.

verrukking van klank

vlugtig vlieg die ritmes uit my vingers
en draai ek in 'n kolk van ekstatiese malkoppigheid
totdat swart en wit,
spier en hout,
ek en jy
een word
die musiek ons vasboei
die melodie ons in hegtenis neem
en die wispelturigheid van die sikloniese ritmika
ons verewig gevangene hou
in die verrukking van klank

exuberance of sound

flightily the rhythms fly from my fingers
and i turn in a whirl of ecstatic madness
till black and white,
muscle and wood,
you and me
become one
till the music shackles us
the melody takes us captive
and the moodiness of the cyclonic rhythm
ensnares us forever
in the exuberance of sound

>>> Gershwin Two Preludes <<<

7.

ontmaskerende koorstigtelikheid
van klank

my vingers
skud die
sweet van
die klankekoors
oor die
gate van
ore wat
die toevoer
is na
die ondergrond
van julle
siele
die kwiksilwer
in die
buis van
julle monde
breek oop
met die
druk hitte
van die
ontmaskerende koorstigtelikheid
van klank

unmasking feverability of sound

my fingers
shake the 
sweat of
the sound-fever
over the
holes of
ears that
are the
subway
to the underground
of your souls
the mercury
in the
tube of
your mouths
breaks open
with the
pressured heat
of the
unmasking feverability
of sound

>>> Takacs Toccata <<<

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