Gethsemane - (2010)
medium voice and piano
Menschen sind der Heiland.
In dem dunklen Garten trinken wir den Kelch.
Vater, laß ihn nicht vor bergehn.
Wir sind alle einer Liebe.
Wir sind alle tiefes Leid.
Alle wollen sich erlösen.
Vater, deine Welt ist unser Kreuz.
Laß sie nicht vorübergehn.
page, circa 2' 10" ]
men are the Redeemer.
In the dark garden we drink from the cup.
Father, let it not pass from us.
We are all one Love.
We are all in deep pain.
All would be delivered.
Father, your world is our cross.
Let it not pass from us.
text is taken from the 1920 Rowohlt collection, Menschenheitsdämmerung,
which was subtitled "a document of expressionism," the poetry movement in
Germany at the time. The image of Jesus in the garden where he prayed in the
Christian gospels is broadened in this poem to "all men." At the time of
upset and yet continuing bursts of creativity in Germany of this period,
many were fully aware of the effects of war as of the political currents
which were sweeping Europe. In this context, the promise of men as their own
savior is contrasted with men who will bear the burdens of the world. How
keen a difference in approach to the earlier negativism of Nietzsche and
others. In a similar vein, Rudyard Kipling's
(1914-18) speaks through this myth-metaphor to the
horrific "cup" which is not taken away.
song setting is minimalist, with but two chords throughout in slightly
changing registers. The tonic minor sustains against the quiet imposition of
the subdominant minor, the whole of the setting then never changing not only
tonality but the single Klang, excepting the final phrases in which
the subdominant minor appears alone under a recitative-like summation and
then absenting itself from the final tonic minor chord.
The score for
Gethsemane 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