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Not in love

published: 2010-06-10

Every once in a while, my sister and I go to a concert. This week, we went to Dvorák’s Stabat Mater. I had never heard this Stabat Mater before and so I wasn’t sure what to expect. On taking our seats, I was thrilled to discover how huge the choir was. This was going to be dramatic. Indeed, dramatic it was. Dvorák’s Stabat Mater started out so heavy, that I kept wondering how he was going to extend this arc for the full ten verses. I was convinced it was going to be unbearable.
It wasn’t.
That gentle middle-part. And then the magnificent ending. He had every person in the choir singing, each soloist and all instruments playing, all at once. Each of them as loudly and as boldy as possible. Bang. And I kept thinking, “good for you, Dvorák, go for it. Let it all out.” It was overwhelming.
I had just read the story behind Dvorák’s Stabat Mater. He and his wife had lost their daughter, and then two more children. He was overcome with grief. Sometimes it’s the story behind a story that makes it so good.
On leaving the concert I asked my sister, “where do you find solace?”
She considered this for a moment and said, “I’m trying to find it in myself. Once I’ve managed to do that, maybe I’ll be able to console others. Or allow others to console me.”
Not in love? Is what I wondered.
When she asked me, “what about you?”
I answered, “in recognition.”
Meeting a person who is going through the same, reading a story with similar themes, music which suffers that pain.
Not in love.

2 Responses to “Not in love”

  1. Ellemijn says:

    Just like Dvorák I lost three children. I did find a lot of solace within myself through the years. I also found solace in recognition. But two years ago after losing my third child I finally found true solace in love!

  2. alief says:

    @Ellemijn I read your lovely and touching piece. I had been thinking about what I wrote. I think finding solace in love is difficult if in turn you’re not ready (or able) to console your lover yourself. But it is probably the most beautiful place to find comfort.

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