Water (2017)

Instrumentation:

SSA, piano

Duration: 4'

Commissioned by the Singapore Symphony Children’s Choir, this piece marks their 10th anniversary of music making. I was drawn to the poem for its unblemished quality, for it captures everything between the beauty and horror of the nature of water. This piece was written in memory of Timothy, a trombonist of the Singapore National Youth Orchestra and Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music.

WATER 

K.T.M. Iqbal

Thought that the sun
had swallowed you
till your rainy return on this soil 

 

Was disturbed that
your flow into the sea 

was a blemish
till you oozed as a spring 

on the river bank 

 

Assumed that you could only drop 

till you grabbed the sky as steam 

 

Sang in praise
of your creative spirit
till you exhibited the drowned 

mounted on your back 

 

Water,
I believed that
you could only wash my dirt 

till you seeped as tears
to cleanse my soul! 

 

[Translated from the original by Elangovan.]

© 2020 by CHEN Zhangyi