O Fortuna!  

rm_Vitruvius78 38M
127 posts
8/19/2006 12:48 pm

Last Read:
9/3/2006 1:29 pm

O Fortuna!

O Fortuna
(O Fortune,)
velut luna
(like the moon)
statu variabilis,
(you are changeable,)
semper crescis
(ever waxing)
aut decrescis;
(and waning; )
vita detestabilis
(hateful life)
nunc obdurat
(first oppresses)
et tunc curat
(and then soothes)
ludo mentis aciem,
(as fancy takes it; )
(and power)
dissolvit ut glaciem.
(it melts them like ice.)

The notes of Carl Orff came flying into my room yesterday. I was awaken from my afternoon nap by the sounds of the Carmina Burana chorus reciting these undying words supposedly written by monks in old Germania as a mode of prayer. Their crying throats, lamenting fortune and fate, were the prologue to what I consider the ultimate recital of Humanity on the subject of Life.

I sat in bed wondering who had stumbled accross this old disc I had shoved way back in my collection. The notes and words were ingraved in my memory that I seldom even heard this particular peice of music nowadays.

When I finally dragged my self out of bed, trying not to appear disappointed at being woken up so rudely, I inched my way down the hall to the living room. There, to my surprise sat my younger neice, a flower of 11, on the rug in front of my outdated stereo listening to the second verse of the poem. She seemed indulged in the music that I did not wish to interupt, but she was alerted to my presence soon after.

The funny thing that had me smiling was that these words were the cream of life's experinces written in the form of reflections on the meanings of Life. To see my neice listening to these words obliviuos to there meaning and thinking that after a long life she will arive at them herself without knowing that she had already heard them in her youth was enough to lift my spirits for the remaining part of the day.

I left here there enjoying the climactic tunes of Orff while I prepared myself to go back to the factory. On my way out I passed by silently and handed her a sheet of paper that had the lyrics to the Burana, and due translation. She accepted them without a word, as we usually communicate between each other, and smiled her thank you.

Someday, she'll listen to the Opera whole. Someday she'll grow to understand what it means. Someday she too will look at the spring of another life from the summer of her own and feel this same sense of gratification and beauty that I felt as I walked out of the room.

Veris leta facies
(The merry face of spring)
mundo propinatur,
(turns to the world,)
hiemalis acies
(sharp winter)
victa iam fugatur,
(now flees, vanquished; )
in vestitu vario
(bedecked in various colours)
Flora principatur,
(Flora reigns,)
nemorum dulcisono
(the harmony of the woods)
que cantu celebratur.
(praises her in song. Ah! )

Sailor376 62M
2288 posts
8/19/2006 9:13 pm

Hello V,

Your niece sounds like a very lucky girl. An uncle who is able to toss off the words and translations to such a piece. But don't think her oblivious, good friend. A branch of the tree that grew you,,,,, I would never under estimate. At eleven I remember being moved by Tennyson's "Ulysses" and Beethoven's "Fifth".
Great works seem to have depths that look at different portions of the ME depending upon how old or what happened today. She looks now and sees with her now eyes the depths that you have forgotten to see. In later years she will see with those older eyes and it will all appear fresh and new and applicable again. Just like her uncle. Hahahahaha


rm_Vitruvius78 replies on 8/20/2006 11:47 am:
Ohoy Sailor, and thank you.

I'm hardly an influence on her except for the three months of summer she spends in the Leb. They've been growing in bursts for me. Every summer a new person all together.

I've tried as best as I can to keep her sheilded from the news and especially the graphic violence on TV. I hope other people have the sense to keep their underage away from the scenes of wanton bloodshed and meaningless violence.

I'm sort of the distant uncle their parents visit in summer so they are stuck with me for the most.

Any children, neices, nephews by the way?

ShyWhisper2006 53F
15175 posts
8/26/2006 3:45 am

One of my all time favorites...I was actually listening to it before I came to your blog...*smiles*...funny how that ...works.
Be well and Take care

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