Monday, May 27, 2013

Acceptance inspired by Robert Frost

Acceptance is based on the poem by Robert Frost.

Here is a MIDI file to listen to.

Here is a PDF for musicians to read, print and play.

The story is that someone at Songmakers sang a song about old dogs with the line, nothing gold can stay. I reported that on Piano World and someone mentioned this second poem Acceptance. I took a look at that and my mind took off. I felt inspired. I'd say this is the second time I've felt that way during my 15 months on piano. The other was hearing two bars of melody in my head for The Passage of Time (see two posts back).

My adapted lyrics follow:
The spent sun throws up its rays on cloud
And goes down burning into the gulf below
No voice in nature cries aloud
With the change to darkness in the sky
One bird closes fading eyes
Or overtaken too far from the nest
hurries low above the grove
Swooping to remembered tree
Now let the night be dark for all of me
Too dark to see into the future
So I can let what will be .. be ..

The original poem:
Acceptance by Robert Frost

When the spent sun throws up its rays on cloud
And goes down burning into the gulf below,
No voice in nature is heard to cry aloud
At what has happened. Birds, at least must know
It is the change to darkness in the sky.
Murmuring something quiet in her breast,
One bird begins to close a faded eye;
Or overtaken too far from his nest,
Hurrying low above the grove, some waif
Swoops just in time to his remembered tree.
At most he thinks or twitters softly, 'Safe!
Now let the night be dark for all of me.
Let the night be too dark for me to see
Into the future. Let what will be, 'be.'

More about inspiration and perspiration: Some songwriters/composers hear entire pieces in their head, and the work consists of transcribing and recording. I've never had an entire piece come to me in that way. My inspiration tends to be a glimpse, a phrase or two, or a line or two of lyrics. From that I start building, working long hours using the craft that I have learned by doing. Most weeks, I devote significant time to the creative process and am always trying to find interesting bits to use.

When inspiration comes, which might only be once a year, that's when all the time spent at the creative grindstone pays off. Without putting in the time to develop the craft, inspiration might be like seeds on dry hard ground. A seed might wait for some day, or perhaps wait for the muse to do more work on the next visit. Unfortunately, my muse doesn't work that hard. If I waited for inspiration to write original music, I wouldn't have eleven original piano pieces. I would have two bars of inspired melody line, that would have floated away if I didn't record them, and an idea to set a poem to music.


No comments:

Post a Comment