The Bustle in a House

"The Bustle in a House" is the eighth song in Bolcom's cycle I Will Breathe a Mountain, which sets the poetry of several American women poets. The cycle is for mezzo-soprano and piano.

The audio recording of "The Bustle in a House" is made possible through a collaboration between the Hampsong Foundation and SongFest. The performers are the SongFest 2012 Marc and Eva Stern Fellows Laura Choi Stuart, soprano and Javier Arrebola, piano, and the performance took place at SongFest 2012 at The Colburn School.

Image: Emily Dickinson, Letters of Emily Dickinson, 1894, frontispiece, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division, Digital ID: cph 3b36913

Date: 1990Composer: William BolcomText: Emily DickinsonSong Collection: I Will Breathe a Mountain

Print vitals & song text


The Bustle in a House

The Bustle in a House
by Emily Dickinson

The bustle in a house
The morning after death
Is solemnest of industries
Enacted upon earth, –

The sweeping up the heart,
And putting love away
We shall not want to use again
Until eternity.

Related Information


Sheet Music

I Will Breathe a Mountain

Composer(s): William Bolcom

Song(s): 1. Pity Me Not Because the Light of Day
2. How To Swing Those Obbligatos Around
3. The Crazy Woman
4. Just Once Text: Anne Sexton
5. Never More Will The Wind
6. The Sage Text: Denise Levertov
7. O To Be a Dragon
8. The Bustle in a House
9. I Saw Eternity
10. Night Practice
11. The Fish

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