C.75 - "This is just to say"

Composed: 23rd March 2015

     After the first coursework for the 'Composition 1' module, "Mirrors", we were later given a small optional task to have a go at setting text to music. The text given was William Carlos Williams’ glorious poem, "This is just to say":

I have eaten

the plums

that were in

the icebox

and which

you were probably

saving

for breakfast

Forgive me

they were delicious

so sweet

and so cold.

     As comical and witty as the poem was, I treated it in that exact vein and wrote a quick Wagnerian epic to accompany the text, then recorded myself singing along to it, and presented it to the class the following week alongside with a few other people that had a go. The piece achieved what I expected – it made people laugh – so that is success enough for me!

     There isn’t much else to say, except that this was perhaps my first witty orchestral piece in a quirky style that I would later write in occasionally. Perhaps, though, too often…

Reminiscence written on 19th July 2016

Last updated: 20th October 2018

© 2019 Jonathan Shaw