Friday, July 4, 2008

A Summer Storm

Composer Antonio Vivaldi's violin concertos The Four Seasons were published in 1725. Vivaldi wrote a sonnet to go with each season. You can listen to the music as you read and see how the two complement each other. This is an electric guitar version and here is Willard Scott reading the poem as the music plays. On this NASA site, you can listen to portions of each season and guess which is which.

By Antonio Vivaldi

Allegro non molto
Beneath this hard season of the burning sun
Man and flocks languish and pines burn;
The cuckoo raises its stuttering voice;
The turtle dove and goldfinch sing in answer.
The sweet Zephyr blows, but is challenged
As Boreas (the north wind) invades his territory.
The shepherd weeps because he fears
The fierce looming storm, and for his destiny.

Adagio e piano - Presto e forte
Depriving his tired limbs of rest
Is fear of lightning and fierce thunder
And flies, large and small
In a furious swarm.

Ah, his fears are all too true,
Flashes and thunder in the heavens and hail
Dashing the heads from the stalks
Of the ripe grain.

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