Thursday, December 16, 2010
Ten days ago an old friend died. He was 61 years old. When we were young, he looked a lot like the great composer, Joseph Canteloube. I have drawn a picture of Joseph Canteloube in my sketchbook. I took two turns at it.
The first muddied to where it looked like a cantaloupe, so I labeled it and left it beside the more successful likeness. That way I can always consult them when I need to tell the difference. The housefinch above both portraits was part of a flock visiting my yard last month and claims to have nothing to do with anything.
The song that helped describe what I felt is Canteloube's "Bailero", which is one of the folk tunes he collected from the Auvergne region in France. My poor translation: "Bailero, you're having a hard time; so am I. The stream runs between us and I can't cross it." That's a close description of loss.
I'm appending a recording of Madeleine Grey doing a lively version and you can make your own translation, which may easily differ from mine. But the melody nails pretty much everything all by itself.