To celebrate the arrival of summer…(at last)…

This piece is the epitome of English summer for me.

The Lark Ascending (Ralph Vaughan Williams), inspired by George Meredith’s poem which begins:

He rises and begins to round,
He drops the silver chain of sound
Of many links without a break,

In chirrup, whistle, slur and shake,
All intervolv’d and spreading wide,
Like water-dimples down a tide
Where ripple ripple overcurls
And eddy into eddy whirls;

My favourite part of the poem is:

The woods and brooks, the sheep and kine
He is, the hills, the human line,
The meadows green, the fallows brown,
The dreams of labor in the town;
He sings the sap, the quicken’d veins;
The wedding song of sun and rains
He is, the dance of children, thanks
Of sowers, shout of primrose-banks,
And eye of violets while they breathe;
All these the circling song will wreathe,
And you shall hear the herb and tree,
The better heart of men shall see,
Shall feel celestially, as long
As you crave nothing save the song.

I hope the weather is kind this weekend – as is forecast for us.

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7 Responses to To celebrate the arrival of summer…(at last)…

  1. Stephen Fox says:

    Completely riveting, Verity, and sent me off to youtube for more. Thank you!

    • Verity Jones says:

      Glad you liked it. I first heard this at 18 when I played in a youth orchestra and a rival orchestra played this in a competition in Vienna (they were good; we were just glad to be there). I fell in live with the piece. The bit at 12:10 sends shivers down my spine normally, but not with this recording.
      You might also like this:

      • Stephen Fox says:

        Yes, lovely. I watched Janine Jansen play Lark Ascending at the proms in 2003 on youtube. Lovely how she turned to the other players when they came in, the only trouble with watching is it distracts from the music a bit. I often end up closing my eyes:)

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