This first movement from “For A Breath of Ecstasy” has accessible choral parts and a very active accompaniment, perhaps representing the “my thoughts” part of the text. A contrasting middle section (“With Wonder”) still retains a certain rhythmic pulse, before the return of the opening material. The movement ends with the touchstone phrase, “I must spend them all in song.” Duration: 4:49 Oboe part included.
1. Wealth Enough For Me
I have no riches but my thoughts,
Yet these are wealth enough for me;
My thoughts of you are golden coins
Stamped in the mint of memory;
And I must spend them all in song,
For thoughts, as well as gold, must be
Left on the hither side of death
To gain their immortality.
Each of the movements of For a Breath of Ecstasy chronicles Teasdale’s search for solace amidst life’s many storms. The tapestry of different vocal forces set against the backdrop of Oboe and Strings reveals moments of yearning, love, joy, and peace. Vivid imagery portrays transcendent moments of solace that are revealed in an individual’s relationship to nature and in love. This work draws texts from Love Songs, the anthology of celebrated American poet, Sara Teasdale (18841933), and was commissioned to celebrate the centennial of her winning the first Pulitzer Prize in Poetry in 1918. -Michael John Trotta Duration: 30:27