The first light comes for alto or baritone and guitar


This is the setting of a poem by my father, inspired by a poem by Supervielle, a view of dawn in the Dorian mode in which the lover equates to the dawn light itself.

The first light comes,
touching the sleeping mind,
stroking the head,
confirming who it is.

Colours prick through the window pane,
with silent customary tread.
Pale light from Palestine and Java
leans over the bed and spreads.

Grey light reluctant to leave China
powders the glass
deepens its image
as you come close.

Yellow light strokes
the window pane
sombre light stains
the human comedy
sprawled on the bed.

And then the watching soul
immanent, anxious, says
“All is still well.
The substance of our days
is whole.

“No greater pain exists
than to feel pain no more,
with the soul helpless
before locked doors.

“Alas Time will arrive,
and Death deprive. “

Meanwhile I take delight
fathoming his form
guessing his contour
beneath the sheets

Sensing his blood
seeking complexity
feeling his hands fleeting
stirred by some dream;
leaving no trace
in Time or Space.

“Let me think no more thoughts
for fear he may awake.

“Let me be quieter
than the leaf that grows.
Or the rose.”
(c) S N Solomons