What kind of music would you write, if you were able to, to express the pain of a great loss? A loss of a loved one, a loss of a home, of a country? A loss of an ideal, of a dream, of an idea? For me, it is the following piece: Dvořák’s String Quartet No. 12 in F Major, and in particular the second movement…
Dvořák composed the Quartet in 1893 during a summer retreat from his teaching post in New York. He spent his holiday in the village of Spillville, Iowa, which was home to a Czech immigrant community. The quartet was written around the same time as the New World Symphony, the masterpiece of Dvořák's years in the United States. Of his time in Spillville, Dvořák said "As for my new Symphony, the F major String Quartet and the Quintet (composed here in Spillville) - I should never have written these works 'just so' if I hadn't seen America." In the second movement, a listener may detect the melancholic longing of an African American spiritual, a sentiment with which the homesick Dvořák sympathised.
I have been blogging daily on this platform for several years now. It is surprising that I have persisted as the world is changing and "microblogging" is now the norm. I blog to amuse myself, make comment on current affairs, externalise some of my creativity, keep notes on things that interest me, learn something new and to surprise myself with things that I discover about this wonderful, and sometimes crazy, world we live in.
I sometimes get the impression that I am on a soapbox delivering a monologue, so your comments are welcome.