Free word associations of Monday evening: death, heart, opera, ‘Batter my heart’, John Donne…
DEATH be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadfull, for, thou art not so,
For, those, whom thou think’st, thou dost overthrow,
Die not, poore death, nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleepe, which but thy pictures bee,
Much pleasure, then from thee, much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee doe goe,
Rest of their bones, and soules deliverie.
Thou art slave to Fate, Chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poyson, warre, and sicknesse dwell,
And poppie, or charmes can make us sleepe as well,
And better then thy stroake; why swell’st thou then;
One short sleepe past, wee wake eternally,
And death shall be no more; death, thou shalt die.
The news that rumoured around the office in hushed and unbelieving tones on Monday afternoon has turned out to be true. Others are better placed to comment and pay tribute. For my part, I am sorrier than ever to have missed OA’s recent Billy Budd and this program gives me pause to think. I see some of the Australian papers are vainly going for the “hard news” angle instead of the respectful vale.
A postscript link. The Overgrown Path highlights the recorded path cut through some “overgrown” and often unjustly neglected repertoire.