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Mari Esabel Valverde - Oracle of Spring

from ET AMOR: songs celebrating queer love by Cor Flammae

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Oracle of Spring is set to a poem by German poet, novelist, science writer, artist and politician, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Valverde describes her composition, “The ‘oracle’ is a lively bird, very active in announcing the arrival of spring through its song.” The work is “madrigal-like in style, contemporary in feeling.” The text jubilantly celebrates the arrival of spring, wondering if the love sparked that season will last for the coming years.


Cuckoo, thou prophetic bird,
Blossom-songster! hear the word
Of a youthful loving pair,
In the sweetest time of year,
Do, thou charming warbler, thou,
May they hope? sing to them now,
Thy cuckoo, thy cuckoo,
And again cuckoo, cuckoo.
Hear! a loving pair demand
At the altar soon to stand;
They are in the bloom of youth,
Full of love, and full of truth.
Say, will it be soon or late?
How long will they have to wait?
Hark! cuckoo! hark! cuckoo!
Silent now? ’tis only two!
Mine is not the fault, nor hers,
Patience but for two more years!
But, when we are one become,
Will pa pa papas e’er come?
We’ll rejoice if thou but criest,
And us many prophesiest,
One! cuckoo! two! cuckoo!
And again, cuckoo, cuckoo, coo.
If we counted rightly, near
Half a dozen ’twould appear.
Wilt thou, if fair words we give,
Say how long we have to live?
True, we fain would, if we can,
Live life’s very longest span.
Coo, cuckoo, coo, cuckoo,
Cuckoo, cuckoo, cuckoo, cuckoo.
Life is a great jubilee
When it cannot reckoned be.
If we e’er old age attain,
Will our faithful love remain?
O, if that should e’er be o’er,
Nought on earth were lovely more:
Coo, cuckoo, coo, cuckoo,
Cuckoo, cuckoo, cuckoo, cuckoo

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


from ET AMOR: songs celebrating queer love, released August 9, 2017




Cor Flammae Vancouver, British Columbia

Cor Flammae is Vancouver's summer chorus of classically trained, queer singers, performing queer content. Composed from the ranks of the city's top-flight choral ensembles and singers, the choir seeks to reveal the hidden queer heritage often ignored in the conservative world of classical music. ... more

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