Order of the Cynthian Palm

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The title of this variation is derived from the poem opening with "L'hiver a cessé : la lumière est tiède" in La bonne chanson (1870). After seeing the musical subject based on the name of Verlaine, I realized its resemblance to the ancient round "Sumer is icumen in". The first section, clearly based on the "soggetto," has been set as as an ostinato consisting of a mixed group of of 3 and 2. This rhythmic grouping is also preserved in the more lyrical brief middle section and, after a reprise of the first section, the quotation is heard which 'endeth' the variation.

Edward Gold

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