Forever Music by Lera Auerbach


Forever Music is a thought-provoking reverie written from the perspective of a child who is discovering the world through music. A mosaic of dreamy recollections, a glimpse into paradise gained of early childhood, this collection of short poems envelopes the reader with its hidden magic.

Concerned with all that is sempiternal – music, memories, dreams, Auerbach’s writing is fraught with vulnerable openness, throbbing with the pulse of its time. Ferociously tender, these reveries leave you thirsty for more of their fresh intelligence and intuitive grace. Auerbach’s language has effortless virtuosity in its illusory simplicity, always remaining at the very core of experience.

Lera Auerbach has developed a fine-tuned voice that captures and distills dreamlike recollections into memory snapshots on the crossroads of poetry and music. Inspired in part by the Japanese form of Zuihitsu (running brush), this book is an invaluable addition to anyone interested in language, memory, intuition, creativity, and child’s psychology.


  • Kind: Perfectbound
  • Pages: 104
  • Language: English
  • Date Published: September 2023
  • ISBN  978-1-953252-84-5


“Pitch-perfect. It’s really beautiful.” —Christopher Merrill, poet, essayist, director of the International Writing Program at the University of Iowa.

“Wonderful writing! I love every note Lera makes in what is really a tapestry of memories. It is permanently exquisite and impenetrable, this yearning and memory. Lera captures it so well – Russian childhood, its painful and exquisite beauty.  This sense of beautiful, poetic urgency is in everything she writes. There is, in everything she creates a sense of genius in flight.” —Thomas McCarthy, Irish poet

“Every single thing Lera Auerbach writes is astounding in its breadth and depth and brilliance. I know no one who can leap, spin, and surprise me as she can. The amount of space – intimate and world – she covers! I have no doubt that I am reading a genius of a natural, pure poet.” —Emily Fragos, poet, anthologist.

“Anyone who deals with the psychology of creativity would discover here new unmapped depths. It is an unprecedented self-disclosure (…) In addition to a wide readership, it is of particular interest for scientists to explore the hidden aspects of creativity for psychologists, educators, and art historians. The fact that it is written in the voice of and from a child’s perspective makes it an invaluable treasure.” —Mikhail Kazinik, writer, musician, radio host, art historian

“ … Invaluable and fascinating guide for everyone who wants to introduce their child to the magical world of music.” —Solomon Volkov, writer, art historian

“Lera Auerbach is, in a word, a polymath of genius – one of the best minds at work internationally. She has led a fascinating life, and these poems tell part of her amazing story.” —John Matthias, poet, Editor at Large of Notre Dame Review



Long queues are everywhere. While we wait,
I play Bach’s Preludes and Fugues in my head.
The queue is in an agitated state of suspicion,
(yet it also seems suspended in space.)

We hold our food-rations. We wait. (Time passes.)
I wonder if the rations for Time exist.
If so, how many have we wasted today?
The queue is polyphonic, like Bach’s fugue.

Finally, Marianna buys a dead chicken.
In my head, Bach is dancing a happy gigue.
The dead chicken joins Bach in the dance.
(He is gallantly holding its bluish wings.)

Bach certainly knew how to play the queue!

(Fugue on a Chicken Theme)


Lera AuerbachLera Auerbach is a poet, writer, visual artist, composer, conductor, and concert pianist whose work has reached a global audience. She holds degrees from The Juilliard School in New York and the Hannover University for Music, Drama, and Media. Auerbach’s first book in English, Excess of Being (Arch Street Press), explores the form of aphorisms. In 2021, she was awarded the Robert Creeley Memorial Poetry Prize. Auerbach’s poetic style is characterized by its vivid imagery and emotional intensity. Her most recent book, A is for Oboe, written in collaboration with Marilyn Nelson, was published by Penguin Random House in 2022. The audiobook version of A is for Oboe, read by Thomas Quasthoff, received the AudioFile’s Best Audiobook 2022 Award and was named an ALSC Notable Children’s Recording for 2023.

Lera Auerbach is a librettist and composer, whose numerous works for opera, ballet, choir, and orchestra are regularly performed throughout the world. She has collaborated with the National Geographic Society on a multidisciplinary symphonic journey, Arctica. She has also collaborated with Yad Vashem – The World Holocaust Remembrance Center – in the creation of Vessels of Light, which received its American premiere at Carnegie Hall in April 2023. In addition to her education and degrees in the arts, Lera Auerbach completed training and certification in the field of psychology. She is currently enrolled in the Master Practitioner Program in Neurolinguistics, and studies Ericksonian therapy and hypnosis. Lera Auerbach was elected as a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum. She is a regular contributor to the Best American Poetry Blog where some of these poems first appeared.

Additional information

Weight 7 oz
Dimensions 9 × 6 × .5 in