Saturday, 28 June 2008


“The soul would have no rainbow had the eyes no tears.” - John Vance Cheney

Artists are a closely knit group and as such develop symbiotic relationships with one another. Birds of a feather flock together and one artist will attract another, not necessarily just physically and in space, but often, also through time and spiritually, through their art. Art is very much a derivative pursuit and an artist may be inspired through contemplation of another artist’s art. The world becomes richer through this approximation, which although derivative is no plagiarism for a new art piece is created, fresh and different.

For Song Saturday today, Austrian, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) and Dominican, Juan Luis Guerra (1957-). The former everyone knows, the latter not as many. Separated by centuries and both composers. Mozart has inspired Guerra, in at least one piece, and how different the original from the derived work! But there is that little matter of time and space that lies between them…

In any case, in both cases the mood is tearful, the music lovely and the emotions run deep.

(Juan Luis Guerra – Inspired by "Lacrimosa" from the Requiem of Mozart)

es todo lo que queda de ti
una cruel ilusión
que marchita mi vida
un rosario que nunca rezó
un enredo fatal
que me arrastra sin camino
la amargura de mi corazón
hoy me queda un hilito de luz
y lo pierdo contigo
yo te hacía bendita, mujer
pero se equivocó mi querer
y me hundo en el olvido
un puñal es tu cariño
no me lo claves que aún vivo
curando las noches
de amor que te di
quiero beberme tus ojos
llorarlos sin fin
ni un pañuelo me has dejado
para secar el pasado
de besos mojados
que hoy suda mi piel
quiero beberme tu boca
besarte, mujer
me devuelvas el pacto de amor
que la luna celosa nos dio
sobre un papel de arena
si te dicen que pierdo razón
es que en mi corazón
la verdad miente de pena
Si te alejas, vida...

Nota: El último fragmento de música de la mano de Mozart son los ocho primeros compases de "Lacrimosa". La pieza, al igual que varias otras secciones del Réquiem, fue completada por su alumno Franz Xaver Süssmayr.

Lacrimosa (Teary-Eyed)
A dream –
All of you is a cruel illusion
That has withered my life.

You are:
A rosary that entangled me
And holds me back, making me lose my way

A song,
It’s the bitterness of my heart.
Today I have left only a single ray of light
I lose it and with it, you

A saint!
I blessed you, woman,
But I was mistaken,
And I need to sink into forgetfulness.

In tears,
Your love is a dagger
That stabs me, but still keeps me alive,
Curing the nights of love that I gave you.
I want to drink your eyes
To make them cry endlessly

Teary eyed,
Not even a handkerchief have you left me with
To dry the past passionate kisses
That even today make me swoon.
I want to drink your mouth,
Kissing you, woman.

I want you to give me back the pact of love
That the jealous moon gave us,
Written on sand, as if on paper.

It’s forbidden…
If they tell you that I’m going crazy,
It’s because my heart lies about the pain.
If you go away, I’ll lose my life…

Note: The last fragment of music by the hand of Mozart in his “Requiem” is the eight first notes of the “Lacrimosa”. The piece, like several other sections of the Requiem, was completed by his student, Franz Xaver Süssmayr.

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