A note from the composer...
1. AFTER THE LUNCH - WENDY COPE
On Waterloo Bridge, where we said our goodbyes,
The weather conditions bring tears to my eyes.
I wipe them away with a black woolly glove
And try not to notice I’ve fallen in love.
On Waterloo Bridge I am trying to think:
This isnothing. You’re high on the charm andthe drink.
But the juke-box inside me is playing a song
That says something different. And when was it wrong?
On Waterloo Bridge with the wind in my hair
I am tempted to skip. You’re a fool. I don’t care.
The head does its best but the heart is the boss-
I admit it before I am halfway across.
2. EVERYONE SANG - SIEGFRIED SASSOON
Everyone suddenly burst out singing;
And I was filled with such delight
As prisoned birds must find in freedom,
Winging wildly across the white
Orchards and dark-green field; on-on-and out of sight.
Everyone’s voice was suddenly lifted;
And beauty came like the setting sun:
My heart was shaken with tears; and horror
Drifted away...O, but Everyone
Was a bird; and the song was wordless; the singing will never
3. DEA EX MACHINA - JOHN UPDIKE
My love is like Mies van der Rohe’s
‘Machine for living’; she,
Divested of her underclothes,
Her supple shoulders call to mind
A set of bevelled gears;
Her lower jaw has been aligned
To hinge behind her ears.
Her hips, sweet ball-and-socket joints,
Are padded to perfection;
Each knee, with its patella, points
In just the right direction.
Her fingertips remind me of
A digital computer;
She couldn’t be, my well-tooled love,
A millimeter cuter.
4. NOMAD - CLAREPOLLARD
Bury me in desert where sand sweeps
a single magnificent gesture;
where there are no trivialities or
tangles, no sticky knots of feeling
or tear-damp patches, human things.
It is impossible to harm dunes,
or bruise winds, or burn sun.
Desert air is think with mirage,
so the Bedouin breathe dreams
and move, keep moving, not letting home,
that heavy-hooked numbness, catch them.
And the stars? The stars in the desert
are utterly indifferent to me -
so much so that I think I may fall
in love with stars, those cold-eyed
maps which guide me towards newness.
Do not need me, I need you
to leave my body untended,
my skin naked and unkissed
beneath the dry, valueless gold.
5. SYMPTOMS OF LOVE - ROBERT GRAVES
Love is a universal migraine,
A bright stain on the vision
Blotting out reason.
Symptoms of true love
Are leanness, jealousy,
Are omens and nightmares -
Listening for a knock,
Waiting for a sign:
For a touch of her fingers
In a darkened room,
For a searching look.
Take courage, lover!
Could you endure such grief
At any hand but hers?
6. THE CONFIRMATION - EDWIN MUIR
Yes, yours, my love, is the right human face.
I in my mind had waited for this long,
Seeing the false and searching for the true,
Then found you as a traveller finds a place
Of welcome suddenly amid the wrong
Valleys and rocks and twisting roads. But you,
What shall I call you? A fountain in a waste,
A well of water in a country dry,
Or anything that’s honest and good, an eye
That makes the whole world bright. Your open heart,
Simple with giving, gives the primal deed,
The first good world, the blossom, the blowing seed,
The hearth, the steadfast land, the wandering sea.
Not beautiful or rare in every part.
But like yourself, as they were meant to be.