Do writers write from beginning to end, or do they create their work in bits here and there before stringing it all together? Composing wise, I definitely tend to be the latter. You have to go where the inspiration takes you. Sometimes that can be the climatic point of the piece, sometimes a snippet of melody, and sometimes the first bar. Of course, once the piece is completed (and often even before then) the re-writing begins to ensure that the piece makes sense no matter what order it was composed in.
I hadn’t finished the other pieces in the cycle when Graham had completed (or near completed) the text for Curating the Collection. Each stanza – a haiku – relates to a piece in the song cycle. I wanted to find a way to musically tie each haiku to its piece without simply re-using each art song’s melody lines.