UNE SECONDE INFINIE

2010

Piano and electronic tape
Based on L'Infinito by Giacomo Leopardi

DEDICATION • To Alix

DURATION • 5 minutes

EDITOR • Edited by the composer

PREMIERE • 29 March 2012, Chaillol Festival, Ensemble C Barré, by Emmanuel Olivier

Une Seconde Infinie is a poetic and musical response to Leopardi's infinity:

 

L'Infinito

 

Sempre caro mi fu quest'ermo colle,

E questa siepe, che da tanta parte

De l'ultimo orizzonte il guardo esclude.

Ma sedendo e mirando, interminato

Spazio di là da quella, e sovrumani

Silenzi, e profondissima quiete

Io nel pensier mi fingo, ove per poco

Il cor non si spaura. E come il vento

Odo stormir tra queste piante, io quello

Infinito silenzio a questa voce

Vo comparando: e mi sovvien l'eterno,

E le morte stagioni, e la presente

E viva, e 'l suon di lei. Così tra questa

Infinità s'annega il pensier mio:

E 'l naufragar m'è dolce in questo mare.

 

A. Leopardi

Infinite

 

I always loved this solitary hill,
This hedge as well, which takes so large a share
Of the far-flung horizon from my view;
But seated here, in contemplation lost,
My thought discovers vaster space beyond,
Supernal silence and unfathomed peace;
Almost I am afraid; then, since I hear
The murmur of the wind among the leaves,
I match that infinite calm unto this sound
And with my mind embrace eternity,
The vivid, speaking present and dead past;
In such immensity my spirit drowns,
And sweet to me is shipwreck in this sea.

That hill pushed off by itself was always dear
to me and the hedges near
it that cut away so much of the final horizon.
When I would sit here lost in deliberation,
I reasoned most on the interminable spaces
beyond all hills, on their antediluvian resignation
and silence that passes
beyond man's possibility.

 

A. Leopardi