This evening, I made a start on a short piece for cello and piano, as my friend Sara made a kind request for a short, meditative piece suitable for use at Communion. Setting that project in motion seems to have clarified for me the supporting role for the clarinet in the final stanza of The Mystic Trumpeter; and on the Orange Line just now, I've scribbled some of Plan B for mm. 440-451.
The trouble was that I had thought the two lines could be two independent streams; or rather, it remains tenable to have them two independent streams, but as it was, the original clarinet sketch was of a rhythmic character which jars overmuch with the voice line. There are other contexts, other pieces in which that would work fine . . . but not here.
The general harmonic conception of the clarinet accompaniment is sound; I've just needed to rethink the rhythmic flow. And the work beginning the new cello-&-piano piece (to be titled Nicodemus brings myrrh and aloes for the burial of the Christ) has helped me focus on that needed task.
The Mystic Trumpeter looks to run just over 20 minutes; I shall need to keep Après-mystère on the short side, perhaps even as brief as four minutes.
Difficult (nor is it necessary) to decide at 11PM, but I think, once Trumpeter is done, I may write Nicodemus and the fl/cl duo in parallel.