Ešenvalds, Ēriks: The Heavens’ Flock


The Heavens’ Flock (2013)

Stars, you are the heavens’ flock,
tangling your pale wool across
the night sky, bits of oily fleece
catching on barbs of darkness to swirl
in black wind. You appear, disappear
by thousands, scattered wide to graze
but never straying. While I – a mere
shepherd of these words – am lost.

What can I do but build a small blaze
[and] feed it with branches the trees let fall –
that twiggy clatter strewn along the ground.
[And] Lichen crusting such dead limbs
glows silver, white. [The] Earth-food for a fire
so unlike and like your own.

Words: Paulann Petersen (b. 1942)
Music: Ēriks Ešenvalds (b. 1977)