Consolation - (1996)
for medium voice and piano
Little's the good to sit and grieve
Because the serpent tempted Eve.
Better to wipe your eyes and take
A club and go out and kill a snake.
But if you prefer, as I suspect,
To philosophize, why, then, reflect:
If the cunning rascal upon the limb
Hadn't tempted her she'd have tempted
from The Collected Works
of Ambrose Bierce: Shapes of Clay. Ambrose Bierce. New York: Neale
Publishing Company, 1910
This little bit of humor is meant as an encore, a sweet bit of "fluff,"
short and to the point. Often in recitals I have used something so short in
order to tease the audience with a thought and a moment's worth of melody.
Several of these short songs have been by the admirable Ned Rorem, some only
a minute's duration.
Bierce's poem is no attack on the various notions of the biblical story or
the doctrine of original sin per se, but rather a whimsical look at women
and their own appeal and therefore "temptation."
[ 1 page, circa 1' 00" ]