As I was listening to WDAV today, an airy figment of Telemann music traveled through the radio and struck my ears. As it happened, the music plucked upon my very soul and, there I was, unexpectedly in the middle of the day, transported for a few minutes, back into the 18th century.
Not literally, of course, but in my mind. My thoughts escaped this present world of work and woe, and took refuge in an age long gone, a era of reason and order, long before the rude disruptions of world wars, global warmings and worldwide economic warnings.
Although there has always been an element of disarray and chaos in human activity, our hindsight view of the 1700s encompasses a world where composers like Telemann or Bach or Handel or Antonio Vivaldi could be seated at a musical instrument and, through intense toil and otherworldly inspiration, impose cryptic inked symbols onto a paper manuscript and thereby draw some amazingly expressive order out of the vast cosmos, by constructing a great work of music.
My all-time favorite is Vivaldi's Four Seasons. Here's the winter movement of it:
Now, a few hours beyond that midday moment, the workday is over; the radio-induced flight of fancy has passed, and I sit at home sharing with you that time-travel moment--a sudden glimpse into 18th-century passion.
And I hope to remind us all that, out there in the midst of human noise and haste and confusion, someone somewhere has expressed passionate order by drawing it out of troublesome chaos. That happened three hundred years ago, and somewhere on earth, even now, some person or persons are deriving creative sense from the hopeless nonsense of our present world.
It's a little bit like touching that moment when Logos spoke electromagnetic light into existence from the dark void.
CR, with new novel, Smoke, in progress