Elegy to Lost Friends
Walking around the block this morning, Chaiselongue's shot from yesterday and my repsonse to it came strongly to mind as I rounded a corner, close to my coffee place. I immediately thought of the Somme and Vaughan Williams' Pastoral Symphony, and could hear it clearly in my head as I lined up the shot. The wonders of technology being as they are, I was also able to instantly listen to snippets of it on youtube by finding on my iPhone this short film on Vaughan Williams and the influence that his own experiences on the Somme had on his music.
If you listen to it, you will hear his Pastoral Symphony throughout; it has a personal significance for me as I was introduced to it in 1978 by my then teacher and friend Jen Duncan. It was her favourite piece; sadly, she died a year later at the age of 39. I play it often on Sunday mornings and, like the narrator in the film, it would come with me to any desert island.