Mantle was composed concurrently with the following poem by Dorothy Meiburg. Each stanza corresponds to one section of the piece.

Fire muddles with rock beneath the holding-in of the earth
Slip through a fissure to the fire's arms

A wave, viscous as yolks and sugar, buoys you
Whisked through and through

Buoyed on flame Beneath the earth
Receiving-rooms of fire's estate, arterial

Black teeth slide slowly down and plash into this maw
Their outlines melt Gray shades ignite and shudder

The molten figures of this company
Might bronze in cool air, up above

Still mined through, livened, by this blood flume
Where rock tumbles into fire and its careening

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