Calamus Cycle is a collection of musical pieces for cello and voice written between 2010 and 2019 by Canadian composer Andrew Staniland. There are five different pieces in this cycle: “Calamus 6”, “Lacrimosa”, “Aliment Roots”, “No Labour Saving Machine”, and “Calamus Variations”. These pieces use poetry by Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass: “Not Heaving From My Ribb’d Breast Only”, “Trickle Drops”, “Roots and Leaves Themselves Alone” and “No Labour Saving Machine” respectively. Staniland’s unique melodies combined with Whitman’s rich poetry depict a variety of emotions, from longing, to love, to anguish. – Program note by Abigail Briffet 2023