Quarrel - (2016)
for soprano and piano
Let us quarrel for
You detest the salt which seasons
My speech . . . and all my lights go out
In the cold poison of your doubt.
I love Shelley . . . you love Keats
Something parts and something meets.
I love salads . . . you love chops;
Something goes and something stops.
Something hides its face and cries;
Something shivers; something dies.
I love blue ribbons brought from fairs;
You love sitting splitting hairs.
I love truth, and so do you . . .
Tell me, is it truly true?
pages, circa 2' 00"
last line of Wylie's text is clever in pointing different directions. One
way leads to the question of truth from seemingly opposing views about
truth, while the other asks a different question. Given the present tense of
the verbs throughout, the question is : are we "parting," though something
seems still to "meet?"
The 3/4 meter, seemingly strong on down beats begins the first strophe on
the second beat for both voice and piano. The accompaniment continues this
while the text is declaimed. The accompaniment turns rhapsodic thereafter as
if in the heat of the moment. The large form is a two-part verse form, and
the last statement as coda asks one moment of hesitation before finishing
The score for Quarrel 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.