Saturday, July 09, 2016

The Carnival is Over

I'd been playing around with a half-written blog post for a few days - my thoughts about things like the UK Brexit vote and the election situation here in Australia. Throw in some superior comments about how people should really be turning inside for what they're looking for (although true!) - and well, you get the picture!

And then, today. Today I went to a little school hall up in the hills behind Mullumbimby - Wilsons Creek. To a memorial service for a wonderful 84-year old woman who had been in our choir - we sat next to each other for months during rehearsals for the Faure Requiem last year.

I knew so little of her life, and listening to family and friends talk it was obvious that she had truly lived life to the fullest. Followed in her father's footsteps and graduated as a dentist in the early 1950s - probably one of the earliest women dentists. Music had played an enormous part in her life. Her son said she had - I don't know, was it 5 pianos in one house alone?! Anywhere she lived she looked for and joined choirs and music societies. Brought her children up on a farm in beautiful countyside  - 10 minutes from the school hall where her memorial was held, and where her children went to school. After she retired as a dentist, she volunteered at an Aboriginal dental service in a county town that was at that time infamous for bad treatment of aboriginal people. Found love again in her 80s(!) ...

I could go on and on - but for me this was a(nother!) wake-up call - to take advantage of this wonderful gift of life. Don't waste it. Stop putting things off till later.

So we - two choirs, (yes she had been in two local choirs) and everyone there, sang songs that she had loved, and songs of farewell. Ending up with one I hadn't heard for ages - The Carnival is Over:

Say goodbye my own true lover

As we sing a lover's song

How it breaks my heart to leave you

Now the carnival is gone

High above the dawn is waking

And my tears are falling rain

For the carnival is over

We may never meet again

Like a drum my heart was beating

And your kiss was sweet as wine

But the joys of love are fleeting

For Pierrot and Columbine

Now the harbour light is calling

This will be our last goodbye

Though the carnival is over

I will love you till I die

Not a dry eye in the hall! Thank you Rozzie ...

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