The Sphere

The Sphere

O the happy ending, the happy ending

That the fugue promised, that love believed in,

That perfect star, that bright transfiguration,

Where has it vanished, now that the music is over,

The certainty of being, the heart in flower,

Ourselves, perfect at last, affirmed as what we are ?

The world, the changing world stands still while lovers kiss,

And then moves on–what was our fugitive bliss,

The dancer’s ecstasy, the vision, and the rose ?

There is no end, no ending–steps of a dance, petals of flowers

Phrases of music, rays of the sun, the hours

Succeed each other, and the perfect sphere

Turns in our hearts the past and future, near and far,

Our single soul, atom, and universe.


The Sphere begins with a long intricate keyboard solo in 4 voices, weaving into itself the words ‘O happy ending that the fugue promised’ from the previous poem, A short unaccompanied vocal solo prefaces the song’s opening bars shown here. The play of diminished and augmented chords in the right hand of the keyboard part is a particular feature of this song.

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