Chromatic Fantasy

Rorem's setting of Hecht's "Chromatic Fantasy" was composed in 2001 in Nantucket and published in 2008. The song is for high voice and piano.

Date: 2001Composer: Ned RoremText: Anthony Hecht

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Chromatic Fantasy
by Anthony Hecht

A smoky mist shawls the white beach,
and somewhere beyond our baffled eyes
sand dollars and chipped shells
like headstones savaged by tribesmen,
rest in gauze banks of pearl.

How pale the world has grown!
Cottages float away
and the whispers of the sea soothe
our familiar agitations.

I am (it says) serene.
I have bested grief.
The easy sway of eternity
in a soft singing of choral voices is mine,
here in the smooth sway
and cool opacity of jellyfish,
shadings of gray, infinitely varied,
compose and comfort.

And you, and you,
multitudinous as the tumbled sands
can acquire the driftwood’s silver patina.

This is best, my whisper echoes
like a distant choir.

Sheet Music

50 Collected Songs

Composer(s): Ned Rorem

Song(s): Clouds
The End
Chromatic Fantasy
For Susan
Psalm 150
The Nightingale
A Birthday
A Child Asleep in Its Own Life
A Journey
The Land of Fear
Little Elegy
The Lordly Hudson
O Do Not Love Too Long
On a Little Bird
Poem for F.
The Serpent
Shelley's Vision
The Sick Wife
Spring (Hopkins)
Spring (Koch)
The Waking
What if some little pain...
While Sodom was occupied
A Glimpse
He Thinks Upon His Death
Rain in Spring
You, the young Rainbow
Early in the Morning
Are you the new person?
Catullus: on the Burial of His Brother
Ferry me across the water
I strolled across an open field
I will always love you
Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair
Look down, fair moon
Love in a Life
On a Singing Girl
Sometimes with one I love
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
Such beauty as hurts to behold
That shadow, my likeness
To a Young Girl
Visits to St. Elizabeths

Voice Type: High & Medium/Low

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