mit sehr zartem Ausdruck

– Arnold Schoenberg’s direction in score

Here is Mahler’s musical postmortem,
his 4/4 dirges laid out, Sehr Langsam,
barely twitching under coroner’s scalpel,

reflex-recalling two chords, funeral bells
clanging on Liechtensteinstrasse
which the corpse once told you to set,

and pianississimo pre-reminisciences of
les adieux sighs at the Ninth’s opening,
a symphony cut down to bone

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