Poems I, II, III

Music of Sally Greenaway

Poems [I, II, III] is a collection of 3 short works for violoncello and piano have been inspired by Reynaldo Hahn's exquisite French mélodie pieces. Every note has been carefully written to paint the warmth of expression: a whisper or a tenderness, deep sorrow or the beauty of stillness. There are little moments of shimmering piano accompaniment reminiscent of the music of Philip Glass, which supports the lyrical cello voice. Due to many requests from violinists and flautists (etc.) the composer has since re-scored the work for other instrumental settings.

The pieces are influenced by 'Roses du Soir' by Pierre Louys:

As soon as night rises in the sky, the world belongs to us, and to the gods.
We go from field to spring, from dark wood to forest glade, wherever our bare feet lead us.
Tiny stars shine just enough for the tiny shadows that we are. Sometimes, under the low-hanging boughs, we come across hinds asleep.

But more alluring than anything else at night-time is a spot known only to us
and which entices us into the forest: a mysterious rose bush.
For there is nothing so divine on earth as to compare with the scent of roses in the night.
How is it that when I was alone I did not feel intoxicated by it?

Category: HSC & Education; Instrumental: Solo & Duo;
Instrumentation: Duo: Guitar & Piano: Note that this arrangement is for Poem III only.
Year: 2020
Work duration: 2min 30sec
Difficulty/level: Grade 7-8
Movement list:
Poem III only
Commissioned by: (revised scoring for guitar and piano) Matt Withers and Sally Whitwell for their ABC Classic recording
Category: HSC & Education; Instrumental: Solo & Duo;
Instrumentation: Duo: Baritone Saxophone & Piano
Year: 2023
Work duration: 7min
Difficulty/level: Grade 7-8
Category: HSC & Education; Instrumental: Solo & Duo; Woodwind instruments;
Instrumentation: Duo: Flute & Piano
Year: 2018
Work duration: 7min
Difficulty/level: Grade 7-8
Movement list:
Poem I
Poem II
Poem III
Commissioned by: (revised scoring for flute and piano) Sally Walker
Category: HSC & Education; Instrumental: Solo & Duo;
Instrumentation: Duo: Flute & Harp
Year: 2022
Work duration: 7min
Difficulty/level: Grade 7-8
Category: HSC & Education; Instrumental: Solo & Duo;
Instrumentation: Duo: Flute & Harp (lever)
Year: 2023
Work duration: 7min
Category: HSC & Education; Instrumental: Solo & Duo; String instruments;
Instrumentation: Duo: Cello & Piano
Year: 2013
Work duration: 7min
Difficulty/level: Grade 7-8
Movement list:
Poem I
Poem II
Poem III
Category: HSC & Education; Instrumental: Solo & Duo; String instruments;
Instrumentation: Duo: Viola & Piano
Year: 2019
Work duration: 7min
Difficulty/level: Grade 7-8
Movement list:
Poem I
Poem II
Poem III
Category: HSC & Education; Instrumental: Solo & Duo; String instruments;
Instrumentation: Duo: Violin & Piano
Year: 2017
Work duration: 7min
Difficulty/level: Grade 7-8
Movement list:
Poem I
Poem II
Poem III

Versions of this work appear in these recordings

Aubade & Nocturne
Sally Greenaway
Released 2014

Starwalker
ABC Classic
Released 2023

Performed by Sally Whitwell; Matt Withers

Something Like This
AVIE Records
Released 2023

Performed by Emily Granger; Sally Walker

Beautiful music delivered to your inbox!


Be the first to know about new music and receive exclusive content.

Become a 'friend' of Australian composer Sally Greenaway by joining her Composer's Circle.