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Pietà (Alto Voice (G3-Eb4), Cello & Organ)


Pietà (1997) 4’
Text by Rainer Maria Rilke, for Alto, Cello & Organ.
Commissioned by Holy Family Church, Queens, NY, Jane Lawson, director.

Listen to the premiere by Caitlin Winnicki, alto, Jane Lawson, cello, and Charles Griffin, organ:

Now is my suffering complete
as pain unutterable fills my entire being.

I stare, am numb and rigid as a rock is rigid to its very core.
Hard as I am, I do remember this:
You grew to boyhood,
grew in height and strength,
you stood apart and overshadowed me,
became too great a sorrow,
far beyond the limits of my poor heart’s understanding.

Now you lie, stilled in death, across my lap;
now I no longer can bring back your life through birth.


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