Tomorrow I’m off to NY for rehearsals and premiere of Seven Stories (Wed). Here’s a taste of the text – parts one and two:
In hindsight, it probably wasn’t the best idea to leave me sitting on the windowsill, but we haven’t known one another for very long, and indeed, neither of us has known anything for very long, so we shouldn’t put too much emphasis on hindsight. I suppose hindsight is not very useful in my situation anyway, tumbling over and over from your window. What was it? An unnoticed elbow brushing my foot, the barest breeze, and I’m hurtling down, down.
But I really shouldn’t call it hurtling, should I? I seem to be moving too slowly to call it hurtling. Hurtling. Somehow that word sounds too much like something painful, whereas I seem to be moving very gradually, as if resisting gravity’s pull rather than succumbing to it. It’s a pleasurable feeling, like playing with a friend. That’s what it is: gravity is a friend who is pulling me, I am resisting, I am teasing my friend. I turn away, turn away from gravity, and I see so much I have never seen before.
2. Not sleeping
Look, here is a window, and the curtains are open, and a young woman is sleeping on a bed. No, not sleeping, she lifts her head. Now her head is down again on the pillow. She is not sleeping, it is the middle of the day, and she is fully dressed. Not sleeping. She is sprawled upon the bed, her shoes are still on, for heaven’s sake. She cannot be sleeping. Not sleeping, she is making sounds – she is sobbing! Why ever would a young woman be weeping in her room in the middle of the day? I could try to find an answer. But the window is gone now, she is gone now, perhaps I shall never know.
It isn’t necessary for me to know. I know so little, and yet it seems too much. Your father bought me yesterday and brought me home to you, someone to play with, and we did play, you unwrapped me and we played madly for hours, I was your friend, your favorite, you told me so, and we played wonderful games, but then you put me on the windowsill and I guess that is the last I will see of you. But how can I know? I can’t see into the future, I’m certainly worse at seeing into the future than I am at seeing into the past, and I’m not very good at seeing the past in any case.
Text and music by Lawrence Dillon
Mary Mackenzie, soprano
Le Train Bleu
Ransom Wilson, music director
music by Adès, Dillon, Marks, Nathan
85 Avenue A, NYC
February 6, 2013