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Blue Work

this desperate edge of now

for string quartet

Year:  2007   ·  Duration:  11m

Year:  2007
Duration:  11m

Composer:   Helen Bowater

Films, Audio & Samples

Helen Bowater: This despera...

Embedded video
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Sample Score

Sample: Page 1-5

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To borrow or hire parts please email SOUNZ directly at Please note that only library members in New Zealand and Australia can borrow or hire parts.


The string quartet is inspired by a poem by Mervyn Peake:

’Is there no Love can Link us?’

Is there no thread to bind us – I and he
Who is dying now, this instant as I write
And may be cold before this line's complete?

And is there no power to link us – I and she
Across whose body the loud roof is falling?

Or the child, whose blackening skin
Blossoms with hideous roses in the smoke?

Is there no love can link us – I and they?
Only this hectic moment? This fierce instant
Striking now
Its universal, its uneven blow?

There is no other link. Only this sliding
Second we share: this desperate edge of now.

Commissioned note

Created with financial support from Creative New Zealand

Contents note

Three movements

Performance history

08 Feb 2008: Ensemble Ruspoli