Tuesday, April 29, 2008

'Tis the gift to be simple

If the sight of the blue skies fills you with joy, if a blade of grass springing up in the fields has power to move you, if the simple things in nature have a message you understand, Rejoice, for your soul is alive.
--Eleanora Duse (1858-1924) Italian Actress

This quote got me singing "Simple Things" and digging through my CD collection to find Copland. Composer Aaron Copland borrowed the traditional Shaker melody in creating his quintessential American classic "Appalachian Spring." Click here to listen to an NPR discussion of Copland's masterpiece ('real' player required). And click here to watch a short 1981 video of Marilyn Horne performing "Simple Gifts" -- and you'll be singing it all day...

'Tis the gift to be simple, 'tis the gift to be free,
'Tis the gift to come down where we ought to be,
And when we find ourselves in the place just right,
'Twill be in the valley of love and delight.

When true simplicity is gain'd,
To bow and to bend we shan't be asham'd,
To turn, turn will be our delight,
Till by turning, turning we come round right.

--Joseph Brackett, Jr. (1848)


  1. Yep. It's now playing in my head -- over and over and over. Thanks. :)

  2. Thought you might enjoy some of these shots taken at Kingsport's Greenbelt this past weekend.


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