Introduction and Welcome

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Friday, October 4, 2013

Jean Baptiste Camille Corot-Orpheus Leading Eurydice From the Underworld, John Philip Sousa - Semper Fidelis, Robert Louis Stevenson - Autumn Fires, and John Milton - Light

This painting by Jean Baptiste Camille Corot is based on a Greek Myth about two young lovers Orpheus and Eurydice.  You can read a brief account here.
Orpheus Leading Eurydice from the Underworld, 1861 - Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot -

John Philip Sousa's march, Semper Fidelis is the official march of the United States Marine Corps.  Listen here.

I thought you might enjoy a Fall poem by Robert Louis Stevenson 

Autumn Fires

In the other gardens
And all up the vale,
From the autumn bonfires
See the smoke trail!

Pleasant summer over
And all the summer flowers,
The red fire blazes,
The grey smoke towers.

Sing a song of seasons!
Something bright in all!
Flowers in the summer,
Fires in the fall! 

Today's poem by John Milton also includes a reference to the music of Orpheus or at least his lyre.  Makes me thankful that I can see, that the natural light God has given is a gift I enjoy, but more than that that the Celestial Light shines in my heart.

by: John Milton (1608-1674)
      AIL holy light, ofspring of Heav'n first-born,
      Or of th' Eternal Coeternal beam
      May I express thee unblam'd? since God is light,
      And never but in unapproachèd light
      Dwelt from Eternitie, dwelt then in thee,
      Bright effluence of bright essence increate.
      Or hear'st thou rather pure Ethereal stream,
      Whose Fountain who shall tell? before the Sun,
      Before the Heavens thou wert, and at the voice
      Of God, as with a Mantle didst invest
      The rising world of waters dark and deep,
      Won from the void and formless infinite.
      Thee I re-visit now with bolder wing,
      Escap't the Stygian Pool, though long detain'd
      In that obscure sojourn, while in my flight
      Through utter and through middle darkness borne
      With other notes then to th' Orphean Lyre
      I sung of Chaos and Eternal Night,
      Taught by the heav'nly Muse to venture down
      The dark descent, and up to reascend,
      Though hard and rare: thee I revisit safe,
      And feel thy sovran vital Lamp; but thou
      Revisit'st not these eyes, that rowle in vain
      To find thy piercing ray, and find no dawn;
      So thick a drop serene hath quencht thir Orbs,
      Or dim suffusion veild. Yet not the more
      Cease I to wander where the Muses haunt
      Cleer Spring, or shadie Grove, or Sunnie Hill,
      Smit with the love of sacred song; but chief
      Thee Sion and the flowrie Brooks beneath
      That wash thy hallowd feet, and warbling flow,
      Nightly I visit: nor sometimes forget
      Those other two equal'd with me in Fate,
      So were I equal'd with them in renown.
      Blind Thamyris and blind Mæonides,
      And Tiresias and Phineus Prophets old.
      Then feed on thoughts, that voluntarie move
      Harmonious numbers; as the wakeful Bird
      Sings darkling, and in shadiest Covert hid
      Tunes her nocturnal Note. Thus with the Year
      Seasons return, but not to me returns
      Day, or the sweet approach of Ev'n or Morn,
      Or sight of vernal bloom, or Summers Rose,
      Or flocks, or herds, or human face divine;
      But cloud in stead, and ever-during dark
      Surrounds me, from the chearful waies of men
      Cut off, and for the Book of knowledge fair
      Presented with a Universal blanc
      Of Natures works to mee expung'd and ras'd,
      And wisdome at one entrance quite shut out.
      So much the rather thou Celestial light
      Shine inward, and the mind through all her powers
      Irradiate, there plant eyes, all mist from thence
      Purge and disperse, that I may see and tell
      Of things invisible to mortal sight.

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