Bumpity Ride

 

 

Bumpity Ride - (2010)    

Walter de la Mare

for medium or high voice and piano


 

"Bunches of grapes," says Timothy;
"Pomegranates pink," says Elaine;
"A junket of cream and a cranberry tart
        For me," says Jane.

"Love-in-a-mist," says Timothy;
"Primroses pale," says Elaine;
"A nosegay of pinks and mignonette
        For me," says Jane.

"Chariots of gold," says Timothy;
"Silvery wings," says Elaine;
"A bumpity ride in a waggon of hay
        For me," says Jane.

[ 3 pages, circa 1' 50" ]


Walter de la Mare

 

The text's original title is "Bunch of Grapes," taken from de la Mare's Collected Poems, 1901-1918. The choice of the 5/4 meter was suggested by the scansion of the poem as I read and reread it, with the though to extending the last line into a play off. "Bumpity Ride" it thus became.

 

 

The setting opens with diatonic clusters by the sostenuto pedal, settling into an opening accompaniment in C minor, the supertonic of B flat major. The characters, Timothy and Elaine are grounded in C minor while Jane sings out into B flat major.

 

 

At the final line of the poem, the setting settles firmly into a diatonic B flat, as the "bumpity" ride goes along, and the vocal line reinforces this marvelous word creation of de la Mare and the 5/4 meter's "bumpity" ride. 

 

 

The score for Bumpity Ride is available as a free PDF download, though any major commercial performance or recording of the work is prohibited without prior arrangement with the composer. Click on the graphic below for this piano-vocal score.

 

Bumpity Ride