Sunday, April 27, 2014

Josephine Miles scored by Ann Hirschfeld and Sarah Giannobile

"Into the thunder and silence of the unfolding"
by Sarah Giannobile (after Josephine Miles)

Poetry Scores' Spring 2014 project in our home city of St. Louis is devoted to "Ten Dreamers in a Motel."

This poem by Josephine Miles (1911-1985) was published in her 1955 book Prefabrications, a prescient registry of changes in the American built landscape and how that changed the way people construct their own reality (and dreams).

SOHA Studio + Gallery hosted a one-night-only Poetry Scores art invitational based on "Ten Dreamers in a Motel" Friday, April 25 at the gallery, 4915 Macklind Ave. Julie Malone and Kat Dunne of SOHA commissioned ten women artists to each make visual art in response to one of the poem's ten numbered sections.

Poetry Scores also has commissioned ten musical scores to the ten numbered parts of "Ten Dreamers in a Motel." That score will be performed live 9 p.m. Friday May, 23 at The Tap Room, 2121 Locust, with ten women reading the ten numbered parts of the poem in between the songs. This free show will be followed by Ann Hirschfeld and Mark Buckheit (10 p.m.) and Dugout Canoe (11 p.m.).

Here is a demo of Ann Hirschfeld's poetry score of the 10th and final numbered section of "Ten Dreamers in a Motel," paired with Sarah Giannobile's visual adaptation of the same passage of poetry.

Free music

"Durable Darkness" (3:05) demo
(Josephine Miles, Ann Hirschfeld)
Click to open mp3 in new tab to keep reading blog.

Performed and recorded by Ann Hirschfeld

Poetry (c) 1955 Josephine Miles
Music (c) 2013 Ann Hirschfeld

This recording may be freely shared for non-commercial uses. For any other usage, contact Poetry Scores at and we will connect you with the composer and the poet's estate.

Independent music is played by Ann Hirschfeld
Photo by Cindy Petracek

Ann Hirschfeld is a versatile veteran of the St. Louis independent rock music scene. She grew up playing in adolescent bands with the likes of Carl Pandolfi and Michael Martin. She was co-leader of Plaid Cattle, a stalwart of the Cicero's Basement Bar scene of the late '80s and early '90s. Now she plays in The Deciders and a duet with Mark Buckheit and has emerged as a primary songwriter force for Poetry Scores. In November 2013 she led the Snow White All Stars in the live premiere of her poetry score to Anne Sexton's "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" (recording forthcoming later this year). She also has a song on the second Poetry Scores Hawaii project, devoted to Beat poet Albert Saijo (forthcoming in 2015, paired with a national juried art exhibition in the Art Department at the University of Hawaii - Hilo).


Here is the part of the poem Ann and Sarah translated into their respective media:

from "Ten Dreamers in a Motel" by Josephine Miles

Midway stayed at a court between there and here
Where woodsmoke rose up straight into the sky,
Cabin by cabin the suppers cooking
Far as the eye could see, the courts unfolding
Durable darkness.

It was the tent and citadel of the many stars,
It was the rampart of the loud highway
And we slept there, waking
Into the thunder and silence of the unfolding
Durable journey.


"Ten Dreamers in a Motel" was published in Josephine Miles' 1955 book Prefabrications, which is included in her Collected Poems (University of Illinois Press, 1983).


Ann Hirschfeld leads the live premiere of her score of Anne Sexton's "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs"
Part 1 (poetry score starts at 5:10)
Part 2

Ann Hirschfeld in The Deciders Deluxe covering Guided By Voices

Ann Hirschfeld's awesome song "Ghost"

Ann Hirschfeld in Plaid Cattle on Critical Mass (1993)
(First song Ann leads is "Sense of Humor" at 5:57.)


Josephine Miles
Photo by William Stafford



Josephine Miles scored by Joe Thebeau and Carrie M. Becker
Josephine Miles scored by Michael Martin and Julie Malone


Read @PoetryScores on Twitter.

No comments: