Duration ca. 20 minutes
Commissioned by the Malmö Symphony Orchestra, the world-premiere in September of 2022.
Strange Sea for orchestra takes its name and its inspiration from the poem by the Swedish poet Edith Södergran (1892 – 1923). This work is also inspired by the poetry of the Palestinian-Syrian-Swedish poet Ghayath Almadhoun (1979 – ). Though these poems provide emotional inspiration, this work is not programmatic.
by Edith Södergran
Translated from the Swedish by Averill Curdy and used with permission.
Implausible fish bloom in the depths, mercurial flowers light up the coast;
I know red and yellow, the other colors,—
but the sea, det granna granna havet*, that’s most dangerous to look at.
What name is there for the color that arouses this thirst, which says,
the saga can happen, even to you—
* the narrow narrow sea Det underliga havet
Av Edith Södergran
Sällsamma fiskar glida i djupen,
okända blommor lysa på stranden;
jag har sett rött och gult och alla andra färger, – men det granna, granna havet är farligast att se, det gör en törstig och vaken för väntande äventyr: vad som har hänt i sagan, skall hända även mig!
THE POET CAN TURN INTO A WOLF (excerpt) by Ghayath Almadhoun translated by Catherine Cobham
And I could have not left Damascus that autumn evening in 2008 Which would mean we never actually met
And I would never be able to tell you that you seem closer whenever I talk to you about Damascus
Or whenever I talk to Damascus about you
For the bodies that we see in the mirror appear closer than they really are And those that carry our souls have been eaten by a predator
Called the Mediterranean Sea.
Excerpt from THE POET CAN TURN INTO A WOLF is used with permission from Action Books.