Today, according to the books, is the first day of autumn up here in the Northern Hemisphere.
The seasons: they are inspirational to poets, musicians, and artists now and before. The air and environment changing around us changing us, whether we are mindful of it or not.
Arizona, Southern California, and West Texas- all places I’ve lived where there is about a week’s worth of Autumn and Spring with a short Winter and a lengthy stay of Summer. Autumn, though- a real autumn, is my favorite season. Spring- too sweet. Summer- too lazy. Winter- too drab.
Autumn, to me, is melancholy and reflective, lively yet calming.
Interestingly enough, there are many harpists who have composed for this season: Grandjany, Tournier, Renie, Hasselmans, Andres, Thomas... Their work is all on my music stand at the moment. Along with some other pieces that weren’t written for the harp.
I hesitated to blog about this in fear of someone stealing the idea, but decided: whatever. I’ll risk it. Even if someone did, this project would still be unique. So: the project is an Autumn-themed program of music that celebrates this season’s character. I would like to perform and record it throughout this year. It’s giving me an outlet in my own season of change and transition. Good times.
My plan is to blog about the different pieces I’m working on, perhaps post some Autumn poetry I’ve come across. Maybe a painting or two.
With that, a poem by Aaron Brown (if anyone knows who this is, please tell me!)...
First Night of Autumn
The smoke-tainted wind
brushes graceful fingers
through skeletons of leaves,
discussing the night in whispers
among hibernating trees
whose stately branches
bear night's jeweled canopy.
Stiff grasses laugh with delight
at the campfire's firefly sparks
dancing in splendid ritual
above enthusiastic flames
waving them onward from below
to journey upward toward
shimmering brethren above.
Fallen leaves fly forth to begin
their own midnight jaunts -
swirling within the fickle wind,
they play music to wish by
with brass chimes hanging
outside the darkened houses
dreaming of summer departed.