Friday, September 2, 2011

A Phantom Serenade for September

It's Labor Day weekend, and our little group is taking a long walk in the park, debating good-naturedly if we should be mourning the passing of summer or welcoming the coming of autumn. A few late-blooming roses can be seen in the flower beds, seeming simultaneously bright and cheerful, and wistful reminders of the garden's past glory.

We wander and chat, but before too long we hear music nearby, and find a local musician under a tree, strumming away....

(I scanned YouTube for versions of this song; I fell in love with the Thomas Moore poem, and wanted to hear the song...and let me tell you, there are soooo many oversung and overproduced versions of this, ranging from over-the-top operatics to the dreadful "Celtic Women." I normally like Celtic music but that stuff just sounds so hollow and soulless to me; yeah, they have nice voices, but it's a bit too far divorced from the folk roots of the music. Anyway, there's a couple of nice videos of simple, straightforward versions, but I liked this one the best, despite the less-than-spectacular sound quality. There's something about a musician under a tree, one instrument, one voice, singing a lovely old song...)

After some music and a chat, we continue on our way, as the shadows grow long, humming the song now dancing in our memories. There's comfort to be found in old tunes like that, and it will sustain us for a while to come.

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