Sunday, January 18, 2009

Wanted: Contralto Solos

[Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect has asked us (more than once) to write an ottava rima poem and although I am past the "deadline" for last week's Monday Poetry Stretch, I was thinking about that.

And this month's project at Cafe Writing included a prompt to think about this quote:
I have the opportunity
Once more to right some wrongs,

To pray for peace, to plant a tree,

And sing more joyful songs.

~William Arthur Ward
then write a poem about one of those things. Enjoy!]

Wanted: Contralto Solos

I search, and hunt, and strive to find,
achieving only grievous hitches,
the alto solos which I've pined
for – gorgeous pieces – honest riches,
yet nothing shines, I'm like as blind
and suff'ring from a jokester's switches.
I dimly peer into the murk
and seek again contralto work.

The opera brings three kinds of roles:
the first are hags that seek to irk;
and next are evil women – trolls
who seek a sheath for poisoned dirk;
and finally lads off tending foals
or scheming how their jobs to shirk.
They feature itches, molls, or ditches,
playing witches, bitches, or britches.

Perhaps I should give up this grind,
and all the heartache that it brings.
Yet on the shelf must be the kind
of piece that I so want to sing,
that binds a heart and intertwines
all noble and uplifting things.
The poignant search continues long
for blissful, joyous alto songs.


laurasalas said...

Annie, this is brilliant! I absolutely love it. Any poem that immerses me in a world I know nothing about, like opera, and yet in my own daily world at the same time...fantastic! I've read 9 poems so far this morning, and this is my absolute favorite of the bunch.

sister AE said...

Thanks, Laura, although my name isn't Annie. I should also confess that I don't really sing opera, though I am a low contralto and am indeed quite frustrated at trying to find solos for my voice range. I'm so glad you like it.

Sleepypete said...

Made me grin too :-)

I definitely enjoy more the songs that I can croak along to.

Must be why I have various Dire Straits albums in the library :-)

sister AE said...

Hi, Sleepypete. :-)

James said...

Have you looked at Widerstehe doch der Sünde, BWV 54 by J. S. Bach? Goes down to F3 and doesn't go above C5 from what I remember...,_BWV_54