Introduction and Welcome

Welcome to All Things Bright and Beautiful. If you are new to this site, I would recommend that you read my very first entry - which is an introduction and welcome to this blog. You can view it here

Thursday, December 25, 2014

The Adoration of the Magi - Various artists, Handel's Messiah, Poem by Ben Jonson

Next week I plan to start with new a new artist, composer and poet, but for this week we continue the celebration of the birth of Christ.

I thought it might be interesting to study and compare several paintings of the magi's visit to the Christ child. What likenesses do you see?  What differences?  How do you picture the visit of the wise men?  If you want more or different images you can look at Google Images Adoration of the Magi.
File:Bray, Jan de - The Adoration of the Magi - 1674.jpg
Jan DeBraij
File:Abraham Bloemaert - The adoration of the Magi - Google Art Project.jpg
Abraham Bloemaert

Hans Memling
Sandro Botticelli


In some ways it feels like we've barely scratched the surface of Handel's MessiahHere is a link to the familiar Hallelujah Chorus.  This is from the end of Part 2 (scene 7 - God's Ultimate Victory). I think a person could spend months on this wonderful oratorio introducing and enjoying each song. We are reading aloud together N.A. Woychuk's Messiah! A New Look at the Composer, the Music and the Message! I also picked up Messiah The Gospel according to Handel's Oratorio by Roger A. Bullard.  It looks good, too.  Madeleine L'Engle's recommendation on the back reads as follows:  "All lovers of Messiah will be interested in Roger Bullard's loving and appreciative book.  No matter how familiar we are with the music and the text or how deep is sour Christian commitment, there is much to learn and rejoice over in Handel's splendid oratorio.  I look forward to my next listening to this great work with the added insights and understandings that Bullard's book has given me."
George Frederic Handel, Sower Series  -     By: Charles Ludwig
If you want a book for your children to read themselves, I always like the Sower Series Biographies.  We enjoyed reading this one a few years ago.

 And I have yet to be disappointed in an Opal Wheeler children's biography.  We haven't read this one yet, but I imagine it is a good elementary biography.

 What books have you enjoyed about this famous composer and this wonderful oratorio?

Our poem today by Ben Jonson

I sing the birth, was born tonight,
The author both of life, and light;
   The angels so did sound it,
And like the ravished shepherds said,
Who saw the light, and were afraid,
   Yet searched, and true they found it.

The Son of God, th' Eternal King,
That did us all salvation bring;
   And freed the soul from danger;
He whom the whole world could not take,
The Word, which heaven, and earth did make,
   Was now laid in a manger.

The Father's wisdom willed it so,
The Son's obedience knew no No.
   Both wills were in one stature,
And as that wisdom had decreed,
The Word was now made flesh indeed,
   And took on him our nature.

What comfort by him do we win?
Who made himself the prince of sin,
   To make us heirs of glory?
To see this babe, all innocence;
A martyr born in our defense;
   Can man forget this story?


Thursday, December 18, 2014

Adoration of the Shepherds - Gerard van Honthorst, Handel's Messiah, Mary's Lullaby - George MacDonald

I like the variety of expressions displayed in this painting of the Adoration of the Shepherds by Gerard van Honthorst, an early 17th century Dutch painter.  It's interesting to note that even though the baby is completely in the light, and he is the source of light in this painting reflected in all the faces - you don't look at the baby much, rather at the expressions and gestures of those who are welcoming him into this lowly world. 
Adoration of the Shepherds by Gerard van Honthorst

Today's performance of Handel's Messiah conducted by Sir Colin Davis is preceded by a short introduction by Verity Sharp. 

This week we'll focus on Part 1-Scene 4, the Annunciation to the Shepherds.  This starts at minute 41:00 but you may want to go back and start from 36:57 if you want to listen to Unto Us a Child is Born again. 

You will find the parts and songs from Handel's Messiah for your reference again at the end of this post.

I found a wonderful Christmas storybook at our library The
Christmas Stories of George MacDonald
.  It has beautiful illustrations by Linda Hill Griffith.  We read the first story last night and it was a lovely story, beautifully written.  I think I'll make this book a Christmas tradition around here.  Our poem today comes from this book:

Mary's Lullaby 
by George MacDonald

Babe Jesus lay in Mary's lap;
The sun shone on his hair;
And this was how she saw, mayhap,
The crown already there.

For she sang:"Sleep on, my little king;
Bad Herod dares not come;
Before thee, sleeping, holy thing,
The wild winds would be dumb.

"For thou art the king of men, my son.
Thy crown I see it plain;
And men shall worship thee, every one,
And cry Glory! Amen."

Babe Jesus opened his eyes so wide!
At Mary looked her Lord.
And Mary ended her song and sighed.
Babe Jesus said never a word.

Speaking of Christmas readings - Librivox has many wonderful Christmas stories read aloud, including collections with poetry. We've listened to The Gift of the Magi and Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol as well as some stories new to us. 

Handel's Messiah (as copied from Wikipedia)

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Nativity Scene With Shepherds by Bartolome' Esteban Murillo, Handel's Messiah, In Bleak Midwinter - Christina Rosetti

Nativity scene with shepherds, by Bartolomé Esteban Murillo
What do you think of this manger scene by  Bartolome' Esteban Murillo?  How do you picture the nativity?

Continuing with Handel's Messiah this week, here is a link to the oratorio performed by the choir of King's College, Cambridge.  If you are only listening to part of it, I recommend focusing on Scene 3 this week - The Prophecy of Christ's Birth.  This begins at about minute 23:20.  A breakdown of the oratorio is at the end of this post.  If you only want one brief song you can start at about 34:57 with "For Unto Us a Child is Born".

In Bleak Midwinter
 by Christina Rosetti

In the bleak midwinter, 
Frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron,
Water like a stone;
Snow had fallen, snow on snow,
Snow on snow,
In the bleak midwinter,
Long ago.

Our God, heaven cannot hold Him,
Nor earth sustain;
Heaven and earth shall flee away
When He comes to reign;
In the bleak midwinter
A stable place sufficed
The Lord God Almighty,
Jesus Christ.

Angels and archangels
May have gathered there,
Cherubim and seraphim
Thronged the air;
But His mother only,
In her maiden bliss,
Worshiped the Beloved
With a kiss.

What can I give Him,
Poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd,
I would bring a lamb;
If I were a wise man,
I would do my part;
Yet what I can I give Him:
Give my heart.

Handel's Messiah (as copied from Wikipedia)

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Mary and Joseph at the Inn - Abraham Willemsens, Handel's Messiah, Christmas Poem - Rachael Lofgren

Mary and Joseph at the Inn by Abraham Willemsens
Here is a link to Wikipedia's article on Abraham Willemsens.

We'll be featuring Handel's Messiah for the month of December.

Here is a link to the full oratorio, Handel's Messiah as performed by the London Philharmonic Orchestra.  I have been enjoying listening to this all day.  I'd like to follow along and get familiar with some of the words.  Here is a link to the texts for each song.  As you can see it basically comes right out of the Scripture.  The words for each part are often repeating so it should be easy to catch and learn them.  I think I'll print that page out for myself and my children. 

Here is a link to Part I of Handel's Messiah Comfort Ye My People and Every Valley Shall Be Exalted. 

A listing of the three parts and the songs in each part as copied from Wikipedia's article on Handel's Messiah  is at the end of this post. You might enjoy sharing parts of the article with your children.

A Christmas poem by my daughter, Rachael Lofgren

Ah, can it be, God's glory came
To earth a babe, from heaven's reign?
To live and die among our dust;
That His salvation we might trust.

Oh can it be, a King come down
Would trade a manger for a crown?
The streets of gold and heaven's light,
For earth's dark misery and night?

But oh Redemption, this the plan,
A remedy for fallen man;
A hope, a joy, a love like none,
That God should give HIS ONLY SON!

Ah, GREATEST GIFT of all the years,
Oh Jesus Savior from our sins!
To Heaven's bliss the golden KEY
We praise you for the gift so free!

Handel's Messiah (as copied from Wikipedia)

Monday, December 1, 2014

Ivan Aivosovsky - Winter Landscape, Aaron Copland - Simple Gifts, and Carl Sandburg - Sketch

Sorry this post is so late! This is the last post with the present artists.  I think we'll focus on Christmas during December, including listening through Handel's Messiah, then start new artists in January.

There are still so many wonderful paintings by Ivan Aivasovsky that we haven't studied yet, it's hard to settle on a final painting.  This picture stood out to me, though it isn't typical of his paintings, it is a peaceful winter scene and seemed a good ending.  If you want to study more of his paintings - here is a link to Google Images for Ivan Aivasovsky.
Winter Landscape
Our final work by Aaron Copland - Simple Gifts I actually really like this piece.

I like the words Carl Sandburg choses in this poem:

THE shadows of the ships
Rock on the crest
In the low blue lustre
Of the tardy and the soft inrolling tide.

A long brown bar at the dip of the sky
Puts an arm of sand in the span of salt.

The lucid and endless wrinkles
Draw in, lapse and withdraw.
Wavelets crumble and white spent bubbles
Wash on the floor of the beach.

Rocking on the crest
In the low blue lustre
Are the shadows of the ships.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Ivan Aivasovsky, Aaron Copland - Themes from Our Town and The Red Pony, Carl Sandburg - Sketch

Another lovely painting of ships and the sea by Ivan Aivasovsky. 
Next week is our last week with this artist, composer and poet.  I'm looking forward to moving on, though I have especially enjoyed the paintings of Ivan Aivasovsky and could happily spend another season with his work. 

 Themes from Our Town and The Red Pony by Aaron Copland. 

Our Carl Sandburg poem today is


THE shadows of the ships
Rock on the crest
In the low blue lustre
Of the tardy and the soft inrolling tide.

A long brown bar at the dip of the sky
Puts an arm of sand in the span of salt.

The lucid and endless wrinkles
Draw in, lapse and withdraw.
Wavelets crumble and white spent bubbles
Wash on the floor of the beach.

Rocking on the crest
In the low blue lustre
Are the shadows of the ships. 

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Ivan Aivasovsky, Aaron Copland - The Promise of Living, Carl Sandburg - Languages

I'm not sure why, but I like boats and water, I like the reflections in the water.  Ivan Aivasovsky painted lots of boats and water scenes.  Here is another lovely painting by this great artist.

Another version of Aaron Copland's The Promise of Living today, done by the Baylor University Choir.  The words to this hymn are at the bottom of today's post.

Interesting thoughts in this poem by Carl Sandburg...
THERE are no handles upon a language
Whereby men take hold of it
And mark it with signs for its remembrance.
It is a river, this language,
Once in a thousand years
Breaking a new course
Changing its way to the ocean.
It is mountain effluvia
Moving to valleys
And from nation to nation
Crossing borders and mixing.
Languages die like rivers.
Words wrapped round your tongue today
And broken to shape of thought
Between your teeth and lips speaking
Now and today
Shall be faded hieroglyphics
Ten thousand years from now.
Sing--and singing--remember
Your song dies and changes
And is not here to-morrow
Any more than the wind
Blowing ten thousand years ago. 

  The Promise of Living 
The promise of living
with hope and thanksgiving
Is born of our loving our friends and our labor.

The promise of growing
With faith and with knowing
Is born of our sharing our love with our neighbor.

The promise of living
The promise of growing
Is born of our singing in joy and thanksgiving.

For many a year we've known these fields
And know all the work that makes them yield.
Are you ready to lend a hand? Ready to lend a hand?
By working together we'll bring in the harvest--
The blessings of harvest.

We plant each row with seeds of grain
And Providence sends us the sun and the rain.
By lending a hand, by lending an arm
Bring out from the farm,
Bring out the blessings of harvest.

Give thanks there was sunshine,
Give thanks there was rain,
Give thanks we have hands to deliver the grain!
Oh let us be joyful
Oh let us be grateful!
To the Lord for His blessing!

The promise of ending
In right understanding
is peace in our own hearts
and peace with our neighbor!

The promise of living
The promise of growing
The promise of ending
is labor and sharing
and loving!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Ivan Aivasovsky, Aaron Copland - The Promise of Living, Carl Sandburg - Our Prayer of Thanks

I usually imagine Jesus in his human body in this story rather than with Jesus in His eternal glory like Ivan Aivasovsky has imagined him, but I find this an interesting painting anyway.... How do you think he looked?

Today's piece by Aaron Copland, The Promise of Living is a lovely hymn for Thanksgiving.  The composer started with an existing hymn tune and embellished it. 

This poem by Carl Sandburg expresses some thoughts to ponder....

             Our Prayer of Thanks 

For the gladness here where the sun is shining at
evening on the weeds at the river,
Our prayer of thanks.

For the laughter of children who tumble barefooted and
bareheaded in the summer grass,
Our prayer of thanks.

For the sunset and the stars, the women and the white
arms that hold us,
Our prayer of thanks.

If you are deaf and blind, if this is all lost to you,
God, if the dead in their coffins amid the silver handles
on the edge of town, or the reckless dead of war
days thrown unknown in pits, if these dead are
forever deaf and blind and lost,
Our prayer of thanks.

The game is all your way, the secrets and the signals and 

the system; and so for the break of the game and
the first play and the last.
Our prayer of thanks.


Friday, October 31, 2014

Ivan Aivasovsky, Aaraon Copland - Billy the Kid, Carl Sandburg - Bath

Looking for this week's painting, I came upon this interesting biographical sketch about the life and character of Ivan Aivasovsky.
There are seven pages of images if you click at the top of the page there on one of the numbers following the "image galleries".  You may like paintings other than the ones I have chosen to share with your children.  There are lots of details to study in this painting as well as wonderful colors.  Notice how the warm yellows and oranges are on the left on the top and on the right on the bottom and the wonderful cool blue greens are on the right on top and the left on the bottom - wonderful contrast!

Aivazovsky's painting

Today part 3 of Billy the Kid by Aaron Copland. 
I can't say I'm really enjoying his music, but my children have been more open minded about it....

An interesting poem today by Carl Sandburg about the affect of beautiful music on the soul - and here is a link to a Tchaikovsky violin concerto played by Mischa Elman

A man saw the whole world as a grinning skull and cross-bones. The rose flesh of life shriveled from all faces. Nothing counts. Everything is a fake. Dust to dust and ashes to ashes and then an old darkness and a useless silence. So he saw it all. Then he went to a Mischa Elman concert. Two hours waves of sound beat on his eardrums. Music washed something or other inside him. Music broke down and rebuilt something or other in his head and heart. He joined in five encores for the young Russian Jew with the fiddle. When he got outside his heels hit the sidewalk a new way. He was the same man in the same world as before. Only there was a singing fire and a climb of roses everlastingly over the world he looked on.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Ivan Aivazovsky - Little Russian Oxcart in Winter, Aaron Copland - Billy the Kid part 2, Carl Sandburg - Child

Most of Ivan Aivazovsky's works are ships at sea, but, though it's not the first thing you notice, this painting also includes water in the little brook running along the right side.  
File:Ivan Constantinovich Aivazovsky - Little Russian Ox Cart in Winter.JPG
Little Russian Oxcart in Winter
Billy the Kid Part 2 by Aaron Copland.  We listened to part 1 last week and will have part 3 next week.

Child by Carl Sandburg
The young child, Christ, is straight and wise 
And asks questions of the old men, questions 
Found under running water for all children 
And found under shadows thrown on still waters 
By tall trees looking downward, old and gnarled.
Found to the eyes of children alone, untold, 
Singing a low song in the loneliness. 
And the young child, Christ, goes on asking 
And the old men answer nothing and only know love 
For the young child. Christ, straight and wise. 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Ivan Aivasovsky - Chains of Caucasus Mountains, Aaron Copland - Billy the Kid, Carl Sandburg - At a Window

I love the colors in this painting by Ivan Aivasovsky.

Chains of Caucasus Mountains

"Billy the Kid"Part 1 by Aaron Copland 

This thought-provoking poem today by Carl Sandburg  - "At a Window"

Give me hunger,
O you gods that sit and give
The world its orders.
Give me hunger, pain and want,
Shut me out with shame and failure
From your doors of gold and fame,
Give me your shabbiest, weariest hunger!

But leave me a little love,
A voice to speak to me in the day end,
A hand to touch me in the dark room
Breaking the long loneliness.
In the dusk of day-shapes
Blurring the sunset,
One little wandering, western star
Thrust out from the changing shores of shadow.
Let me go to the window,
Watch there the day-shapes of dusk
And wait and know the coming
Of a little love.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Ivan Aivazovsky - Ship Twelve Apostles, Aaron Copland - Fanfare for the Common Man, Carl Sandburg - A Father to His Son

Another wonderful seascape by Ivan Aivazovsky. I like the blues and greens against the pink and peach and the outline of the full moon still in the sky as the sun comes up or perhaps as it sets. The ships are interesting, too.  Amazing motion in the sea with foam and still reflecting the colorful sky. 

Ship Twelve Apostles


Aaron Copland - Fanfare for the Common Man

Lots to think about in today's poem by
Carl Sandburg

A Father to His Son
A father sees his son nearing manhood.
What shall he tell that son?
'Life is hard; be steel; be a rock.'
And this might stand him for the storms
and serve him for humdrum monotony
and guide him among sudden betrayals
and tighten him for slack moments.
'Life is a soft loam; be gentle; go easy.'
And this too might serve him.
Brutes have been gentled where lashes failed.
The growth of a frail flower in a path up
has sometimes shattered and split a rock.
A tough will counts. So does desire.
So does a rich soft wanting.
Without rich wanting nothing arrives.
Tell him too much money has killed men
and left them dead years before burial:
the quest of lucre beyond a few easy needs
has twisted good enough men
sometimes into dry thwarted worms.
Tell him time as a stuff can be wasted.
Tell him to be a fool every so often
and to have no shame over having been a fool
yet learning something out of every folly
hoping to repeat none of the cheap follies
thus arriving at intimate understanding
of a world numbering many fools.
Tell him to be alone often and get at himself
and above all tell himself no lies about himself
whatever the white lies and protective fronts
he may use against other people.
Tell him solitude is creative if he is strong
and the final decisions are made in silent rooms.
Tell him to be different from other people
if it comes natural and easy being different.
Let him have lazy days seeking his deeper motives.
Let him seek deep for where he is born natural.
Then he may understand Shakespeare
and the Wright brothers, Pasteur, Pavlov,
Michael Faraday and free imaginations
Bringing changes into a world resenting change.
He will be lonely enough
to have time for the work
he knows as his own.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Ivan Aivazovsky - The Ninth Wave, Aaron Copeland - Concerto for Clarinet and String Orchestra, Carl Sandburg - Autumn Movement

Another wonderful seascape by Ivan Aivazovsky -
"It depicts a sea after a night storm and people facing death attempting to save themselves by clinging to debris from a wrecked ship.
The painting has warm tones in which the sea appears to be not so menacing and giving a chance for the people to survive.
This painting is often called "the most beautiful painting in Russia.  
Both English and Russian titles refer to the nautical tradition that waves grow larger and larger in a series up to the largest wave, the ninth (or tenth) wave, at which point the series starts again." From Wikipedia's entry 'The Ninth Wave'.
seems almost like you can see light through the waves

File:Hovhannes Aivazovsky - The Ninth Wave - Google Art Project.jpg

Aaron Copeland
James Day interviews Aaron Copeland - Aaron Copeland talking about his life and his music.

Concerto for Clarinet and String Orchestra 

Fall used to be my favorite time of year but the older I get the more I feel the sadness of coming winter and how quickly the color and beauty pass.  This poem captures that sadness.
Autumn Movement by Carl Sandburg

I cried over beautiful things knowing no beautiful thing lasts.

The field of cornflower yellow is a scarf at the neck of the copper  

   sunburned woman, the mother of the year, the taker of seeds.

The northwest wind comes and the yellow is torn full of holes,
   new beautiful things come in the first spit of snow on the northwest wind,
   and the old things go, not one lasts.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Ivan Aivazovsky - the Shipwreck, Aaron Copeland - Hoedown, Carl Sandburg - Arithmetic

Several of you have asked for an index to artists and composers.  I'm not sure how to go about that other than suggesting that you use the search button if you are looking for a particular artist, poet or composer.  You can just type in the last name and it should list the possible posts ( You may need to enable the no-script if the search button isn't working for you.  Just right click.) Or you can look through the Blog Archive list, click by year and then by date.  Sometimes I've been good about listing them all in the title, sometimes I've forgotten, but since artists, composers and poets have all been featured for multiple weeks, you should be able to find them listed in the title for one of the weeks.  If someone knows of a better way to catalog and display them I'm open to learning how to add that.... you can contact me at

 This week another wonderful painting by Ivan Aivazovsky - The Shipwreck.  Lots to look at in this painting.  The light and shadows are wonderfully portrayed, there are people to look at on the rock as well in the lifeboat.  I like how he lights up the parts of the painting he wants you to focus on. You can see it a bit larger here at Wikiart.   I love the pastel colors in the wave!

Aaron Copeland - Hoedown from Rodeo.  This piece of music has a lot of energy in it.  I can't say I really enjoy it, but my daughter said she likes it because it's "hyper".  

Carl Sandburg's Arithmetic is a fun poem about numbers



Arithmetic is where numbers fly like pigeons in and out of your
Arithmetic tell you how many you lose or win if you know how
    many you had before you lost or won.
Arithmetic is seven eleven all good children go to heaven -- or five
    six bundle of sticks.
Arithmetic is numbers you squeeze from your head to your hand
    to your pencil to your paper till you get the answer.
Arithmetic is where the answer is right and everything is nice and
    you can look out of the window and see the blue sky -- or the
    answer is wrong and you have to start all over and try again
    and see how it comes out this time.
If you take a number and double it and double it again and then
    double it a few more times, the number gets bigger and bigger
    and goes higher and higher and only arithmetic can tell you
    what the number is when you decide to quit doubling.
Arithmetic is where you have to multiply -- and you carry the
    multiplication table in your head and hope you won't lose it.
If you have two animal crackers, one good and one bad, and you
    eat one and a striped zebra with streaks all over him eats the
    other, how many animal crackers will you have if somebody
    offers you five six seven and you say No no no and you say
    Nay nay nay and you say Nix nix nix?
If you ask your mother for one fried egg for breakfast and she
    gives you two fried eggs and you eat both of them, who is
    better in arithmetic, you or your mother?

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Ivan Aivasovsky - Fisherman on the Coast of the Sea, Aaron Copland - Symphony for Organ and Orchestra, Carl Sandburg - Monotone

Fisherman on the Coast of the Sea, by Ivan Aivasovsky.  I like the sun shining behind the clouds and through the waves.  You almost feel like you shouldn't look at the sun - it's too bright.  The aqua colors in the waves are so lovely!!  What story do you think this painting tells?

The following link will give you a large clear picture of this painting:Fisherman on the Coast of the Sea - Ivan Aivasovsky

Aaron Copland - Symphony for Organ and Orchestra 
I'm not very familiar with Aaron Copland's music and I'm finding myself with mixed feelings about it - it feels a bit new age and unsettling to me.  How about you - how does his music make you feel?  It almost feels like it could be out of a movie, maybe even in a bit of a spooky scene sometimes and then it turns playful.  It doesn't feel confident and resolving like Bach, Beethoven or Haydn. It makes me feel a bit edgy and unsettled - how about you?

Beautiful words by Carl Sandburg


  The monotone of the rain is beautiful,
and the sudden rise and slow relapse
Of the long multitudinous rain.

  The sun on the hills is beautiful,
Or a captured sunset sea-flung,
Bannered with fire and gold.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Ivan Aivazovsk, Aaron Copland - Appalachian Spring, Carl Sandburg - Fog

A new artist this week Ivan Aivazovsky.  This artist is new to me, but his work looks lovely, lots of ships and seascapes.  I hope you enjoy our study of his works.  Following are links to biographical sketches a photograph and quotes followed by our first painting.
Ivan Aivazovsky - Wikipedia
Aivazovsky - Self-portrait 1874.jpg

The following is a quote from WikiArt.Org, "Throughout his lifetime, Aivazovsky contributed over 6,000 paintings to the art world, ranging from his early landscapes of the Crimean countryside to the seascapes and coastal scenes for which he is most famous. Aivazovsky was especially effective at developing the play of light in his paintings, sometimes applying layers of color to create a transparent quality, a technique for which they are highly admired.  

Although he produced many portraits and landscapes, over half of all of Aivazovsky’s paintings are realistic depictions of coastal scenes and seascapes. He is most remembered for his beautifully melodramatic renditions of the seascapes of which he painted the most. Many of his later works depict the painful heartbreak of soldiers at battle or lost at sea, with a soft celestial body taunting of hope from behind the clouds. His artistic technique centers on his ability to render the realistic shimmer of the water against the light of the subject in the painting, be it the full moon, the sunrise, or battleships in flames. Many of his paintings also illustrate his adeptness at filling the sky with light, be it the diffuse light of a full moon through fog, or the orange glow of the sun gleaming through the clouds. "  for more from this site WikiArt.Com - Ivan Aivazovsky

 I love the wonderful pastel colors and the light shining out behind the clouds.  I haven't gotten a web album of paintings put together yet - is that something some of you would use?  If I get a few affirmative comments I'll put one together, but if no one is using it I'll just post them week by week....  

Our new composer - Aaron Copland was an American composer who wrote a variety of music as well as teaching and conducting.
The following is from Wikipedia:  Aaron Copland (/ˌærən ˈkplənd/; November 14, 1900 – December 2, 1990) was an American composer, composition teacher, writer, and later in his career a conductor of his own and other American music. Instrumental in forging a distinctly American style of composition, in his later years he was often referred to as "the Dean of American Composers" and is best known to the public for the works he wrote in the 1930s and 1940s in a deliberately accessible style often referred to as Populist and which the composer labeled his "vernacular" style.  The open, slowly changing harmonies of many of his works are archetypical of what many people consider to be the sound of American music, evoking the vast American landscape and pioneer spirit. In addition to his ballets and orchestral works, he produced music in many other genres including chamber music, vocal works, opera and film scores.  Following is the link for the rest of the article:  Wikipedia - Aaron Copland.

PBS Aaron Copland 

Today's piece,"Appalachian Spring" is one of his well-known pieces - Aaron Copland - Appalachian Spring.

Our new poet for the Fall season is Carl Sandburg.  Following is a link to two biographical sketches:
 The Poetry Foundation: Carl Sandburg.  
Wikipedia - Carl Sandburg 

Our first poem-


Carl Sandburg

The fog comes
on little cat feet.

It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.