Hello dear loves of my heart,

I am completely braindead but seriously overjoyed, having turned in my last research paper EVER today. Therefore, I have no energy left for a “real” post as I am about to put on my stretchy pants and fall asleep.

However, since it is National Poetry Month, I want to share my new favorite poem with you. In a recent concert, the UT Women’s Chorus performed Randall Thompson’s “The Place of the Blest,” a four-movement “Cantata for Treble Voices and Chamber Orchestra.” It’s arguably one of my favorite pieces I’ve ever performed. And I’ve performed a lot of pieces. The text of my favorite movement is set to the text of Robert Herrick’s poem “The White Island: Or Place of the Blest.” The words of this poem can easily bring me to tears (especially when we sang it). Something about the rhythm of the words just goes straight to my soul. I’m not sure I’ve ever read a more gorgeous, haunting poem than this. Without further ado;

The White Island: Or Place of the Blest
By: Robert Herrick

In this world (the Isle of Dreams)
While we sit by sorrow’s streams,
Tears and terrors are our themes

But when  once from hence we fly,
More and more approaching nigh
Unto young eternity

In that whiter island, where
Things are ever more sincere;
Candor here, and lustre there

There no monstrous fancies shall
Out of hell an horror call
To create (or cause at all)

There, in calm and cooling sleep
We our eyes shall never steep;
But eternal watch shall keep

Pleasures, such as shall pursue
Me immortalized and you;
And fresh joys as never to
Have ending.

So stunning. If you have a chance to look up the Thompson work, please do. It’s stunning.

Candor here, and lustre there,

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