Forest Symphony

Falling river

“For most of us, there is only the unattended

Moment, the moment in and out of time,

The distraction fit, lost in a shaft of sunlight,

The wild thyme unseen, or the winter lightning

Or the waterfall, or music heard so deeply

That it is not heard at all, but you are the music

While the music lasts.”

~ T. S. Eliot, Four Quartets, “The Dry Salvages”

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In a moment of my freedom’s choosing and my mind’s imagining, I went into a forest of my mind. I created this wonderful place shrouded by trees of every type. The place I saw hosted small rapids as overture to the grand symphony I would soon hear. A flat section of land next to a tall oak tree was the perfect box seat in the great symphony hall of nature. The animals of the forest did not scare me. I know my spirit is like theirs and they in turn know that I mean them no harm and they will do no harm to me.


I shut my eyes in private meditation as I sat upon a rock. With my legs crossed and my hands outstretched like a conductor leading her orchestra, the main work began. The Forest Symphony started with an allegro first movement. The cascading river falling against the rocks was the brass section. Its powerful crescendo defined the rhythm of the music. A distant group of birds added their melody of piccolo and flutes; an occasional oboe and bassoon from somewhere on the other side of the woods added color to the bird’s melody.


It was time for my solo. I slid off of the rock and jumped into the pool below the falling waters. The water felt cold around me so my orchestral section of clarinets and saxophones that was my body joined the allegro in pianissimo. Little by little, as I embraced the refreshing cool, my movements in the water took the clarinets and saxophones to piano forte to forte and finally to fortissimo. Now ignoring all thoughts of cold, I fell into the water as the tinkling sound of a glockenspiel cut above nature’s orchestra and brought it to sudden silence; my solo began. The movement of my arms and the kicking of my legs as I swam around in the water was my cello solo in this grand symphony. My arcs and kicks added dynamics and articulation to every solo note I played until I could swim no more. This first movement and my solo ended as the water fell off of my body as I left the pool and entered my tent. It was time for rest in that sacred moment between sections.


My focus turned only to the sounds outside. Violas began their parts as leaves and seeds fell upon the skin of my tent. They came steady and strong and often played as slurs when wind forced them back against the tent’s cloth. The violins came suddenly in the courting calls of crickets and cicadas as the double bass of croaking frogs calling for mates punctuated every note. Their parts did not start in piano; they came in forte and then fortissimo. A grand piano added its melody in every single raindrop that suddenly fell from the sky. The forest symphony built upon itself as notes came in pizzicato and staccato and the tempo reached the tempo of presto; my heartbeat and breath matched the downbeats of the symphony’s time signature.


The music grew grander and louder as the timpani, drums, and cymbal clashed with every clap of thunder and flash of lightening. This marvelous sound went on and grew until only the piano and percussion was heard. Nature’s symphony hall was filled with a frenzy of sound. Nothing else mattered to me except that moment. I had no fear, no regret, no loneliness nor emptiness in my life because in that moment, from the imaginings of my mind, I experienced the premier performance of my own composition of Forest Symphony. When at its highest peak of excitement, the symphony’s score suddenly called for sforzando without decrescendo and it just as suddenly stopped; only the brass with its continuing melody in mezzo piano remained and then I slept.

Weight5 lbs
FramedNo..Wooho I can have my own framing
GlassNot Needed for Oil Painting...

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