September 26, 2011

The following is a poem sequence inspired by Erik Satie’s Vexations (1893) and his short-lived relationship with Suzanne Valadon. Vexations appears to have been composed shortly after this brief, but intense, love affair. This sequence was conceived and written in collaboration with Eva Von Pelt. Please read her wonderful words at http://evavonpelt.wordpress.com . My words are clothed in bold.

Listen to Satie’s Vexations here:

(the curtains open)

Your shy glance
the pause
between notes

My breath suspends
viewing time’s dilation
our universe rotates around fixed stars

Rain drops splashing
into spaces
of silence

is where eternal love
internal lives

running down
black silk

Slitted relativity; absolute
as cushion glides over warm waves
reflecting moist ivory sheath; lubricious (sinking)

in a half smile

Rings of smoke kick;
tears crash translucent
light is pulled low in the sky

Love mourned
eyes wet closed
hands empty open

Metrical heartbeat laments, as
ears vibrate with pain(t) and
hope folds into love’s murmur

the sound of fingers (almost)
caressing beauty

Pulled by a note, taut; plucked in time
tapping out notes; stillborn, as
an ebony sheath empties

Ivory pleasure
the black of not there
knuckle white pain

(the curtains close)

Portrait of Satie by Suzanne Valadon

The fierce quiet of love roars in my ears…


(part of Open Link Night week 11 – http://dversepoets.com  )

24 Responses to “(Dis)quiet”

  1. A love affair played out in the harmonies and dissonances of the piano: delicate, tempered with pain, beautifully composed. I have a wonderful book ‘Women Artists and the Parisian Avant-Garde’ by Gill Perry that covers Valadon and one of my favorite artists, Emily Charmy. I especially enjoyed ‘the pause between notes’; ‘spaces of silence’; ‘knuckle white pain’; and ‘fierce quiet of love roars’, Peter. Eva, ‘eternal love/internal lives’; ‘hope fold into love’s murmur’; and ‘pulled by a note, taut’ stood out. I love it, what a wonderful collaboration.

  2. brian said

    oh this is beautiful…love the sway of emotion between you…would love to see this actually performed…def think it would be a hit..and some fun word play as well…

  3. claudia said

    your words together with the music is just beautiful…love that you set it up like a stage play…leads us right into the scene..

  4. tashtoo said

    The curtains close as the audience rises to deliver a very well deserved standing ovation. Encore!

  5. you two are great together… beautiful piece..

  6. ayala said

    A beautiful piece…you set it up perfectly.

  7. Heaven said

    I love the weaving of your words… lovely images. I felt I was floating along ~

    And yes Eva is a wonderful writer ~

  8. Such sadness felt here, “Sorrow lingers in half a smile” – what a line. This is a wonderful collaboration 🙂

  9. Truly unique and beautiful. Love the back and forth, this/that, black/white, open/close feel of this. In all of music, Satie stands alone.

  10. Enjoyed the dialogue in this. And the music of your words AND the music. Thanks for this delight.

  11. Divya said

    This is superbly beautiful and when I read it with music.. was super..loved every word and its sound..its a pleasure.. Ivory pleasure 🙂

  12. the word bar said

    Very creative.. I adore creativity with the pen.. I agree with Brian, this would be awesome performed live.. I can envision an entire set of these.

    Just lovely all the way around..

  13. Enjoyed this collaboration very much, I too think this would make an interesting live performance experience…

  14. This is amazing just like a stage play or scene from a movie. the music combined with your words brings me right into the scene and so wonderfully presented and done

  15. Morning said

    very visual,
    thanks for sharing…

  16. Oh, very beautiful… a wonderful collaboration, Peter. I do love those…you have both produced something exquisite. 🙂

  17. siubhan said

    This makes for an incredible duet. My breath taken by that last line

    “The fierce quiet of love roars in my ears…”

    … speechless.

  18. wow, you write to pair up with another awesome poet, how creative.

    both writings are extremely beautiful.

  19. Miss Kitten said

    Goddamn, that was good. And I love the idea of writing a piece with a partner. Gives me an idea…

  20. Ah, Satie. 🙂 Well done, both of you.

  21. So beautiful, a wonderful duo and the music completes it all. A joy! 🙂

  22. Joe Hesch said

    Lovely piece and collaboration. Inspiring.

  23. expatinCAT said

    Thank you for all your wonderful comments. Eva and I are very grateful… 🙂

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