It Was an Evening

(2012)
“It Was an Evening,” the opener of Abel’s four-part cycle Rainbow Songs, is an idyll of idealized love – of the giddy and unblemished sort that permeates initial infatuation and the process of falling in love. It overflows with fantasy-infused natural metaphors and celestial symbolism. The singer rhapsodizes about the future -- “… one day a boat will carry us laughing … to the Sea of Tranquility” – while the piano part evokes wonder and images of beauty. 

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The audio recording provided in the audio playlist to the right features Jamie Chamberlin, soprano, and Victoria Kirsch, piano, and is from Mark Abel's album Terrain of the Heart. To listen, please click on the track name itself.
IT WAS AN EVENING

It was an evening
when a thousand fireflies lit the air.
The moonlight was streaming
across the fields.
Hearts were dancing, spinning into space.
You were approaching escape velocity,
I was right behind you.
Soon to sink earthward, resting on
the pillow of your breast.

Yesterday the sun was burning,
like a beacon through a storm.
We’ve been given such a short time here.
Let’s fan the flames of desire
until the statues weep.

My love is carving a channel
across your land.
May it be deep and nourish you,
-- a haven for beautiful birds
who trace silent arcs in the sky,
fish of many colors
floating among the reeds.

On these banks the rocks are ancient, opaque,
rounded by wind and time.
We will climb up and over
toward the glowing horizon,
which retreats with our every step,
unattainable and unknowable.

Then one day a boat will carry us
laughing to the sea,
the Sea of Tranquility.
Floating there we glimpse other channels
dug by faceless forces long ago
on the Red Planet,
a lantern hanging from heaven.

Audio PLaylist