I am sharing an from Don Giovanni the opera written by Mozart. One of the premiere Basso voices is Ferruccio Furlanetto who sings Leporello’s part.
This is an enjoyable and funny Aria where Leporello, Don Giovanni’s servant is convincing (this abused woman by his Master) to see that he is not worth the trouble.
Leporello lists all his Master’s conquests all over the world, explaining that he has a “catalogue” of his paramours. He produces the book and invites her to read with him the lists he made.
Yin Huang- Madame Butterfly saying farewell to her beloved son.
One of the most powerful arias in opera history. Yin Huang does is justice and then some. If it does not bring tears to your eyes, I am not sure what would. An amazing film but outstanding performance. She expresses innocence, naivete and deep love.
Her American lover did come back as she predicted but not to be with her. He came back to ask for his child. His new wife could not bear him children so he asked her for his son. To release her son and for “the sake of honor”, she kills herself.
Here are the Italian words and their interpretation.
Con onor muore Let there be honor in death
Chi non puo sebar vita where there is no honor in life.
Con onor Let there be honor.
Tu? Tu? Tu? Tu? You! You! You! You!
Piccolo iddio! My adored one, my love!
Amore, amore mio. My love, my own love.
Fior My flower,
di giglio e di rosa. more precious than lilies and roses!
Non saperlo mai…per te, You must never know the truth;
Pei tuoi puri occhi It is for you my child, for love of you
Muore Butterfly… that Butterfly will die!
Perche tu possa andar You will live happily
Di la dal mare across the sea.
Senza che ti ricorda And spared the memory
Ai di mature as you grow
Il materno abbandono of your mother forsaking you.
O a me, sceso dal trono For me you came down from the throne
Dell’alto paradise, of heaven
Guarda ben fiso, fiso, Look steadfastly steadfastly,
Di tua madre la faccial! into your mother’s face!
Che ten’ resti una traccia, So traces of it ramain in memory,
Guardo ben! Look well!
Amore, addio, addio! My love, goodbye, goodbye!
Piccolo amor! Little love!
Va, gioca, gioca. Go play, play.
One of my favorite authors ever is O Henry. Opinions differ strongly on the man’s work but he is as realistic in his recounting as Norman rockwell was in his painting.
Having read then left his stories on a shelf for a long time, in the last few days, I ran across them when downloading books to listen to. Taking O Henry with me on my evening walk, he again inspired me. The stories he wove are simple and the characters interesting and attractive. His surprise endings remain appealing and sometimes even jarring.
The next day, I sat at my work table and drew out book covers for two of his short stories. Yes, I know we do not “publish” on paper much these days but what can I say, I was inspired. I share with you two of his stories and include places where you can get them absolutely free to read and enjoy.
The Last Leaf
The Gift of the Magi
Crome Yellow by Aldous Huxley
Book Cover: Crome Yellow
I kept waiting for things to happen in this story but you could say my mind is marred by the fast pace of the present. At a lazy and wonderful pace of the country home, things do happen.
A true 20s piece of literature, Crome Yellow describes the descent of several people on a country estate to mooch off the owner. A collection of individuals different and lost as it were in their time spend all their time eating, drinking and doing silly activities even to the extent of hurting themselves. Set in post WWI, morality clashed with life and everyone looked for the truth and reality in their life and what they learned from the horrors of the war.
Huxley satirized the home he frequented with other authors and artists. An image of Garsington Manor, Crome Yellow represented the same refuge and home of Lady Ottoline Morrell.
In the mix is our hero Daniel, a lost poet looking for the next few words. An artist, a young woman, another woman just a bit older, a woman who gambles and lives for the stars, an astrologer and author and so on. These people gather, discuss and ponder the morality of their time. In the mix is a minister who kept a sermon around for so long, it ill-fit the time he repeated it to his congregation.
A historian who is hell bent on writing about Crome Yellow reads to the group from his writings which he finished. Going back and forth between the past and the present showed morality in its best and worst. Nothing changes much as far as that goes. You either have the morals or you do not and it is personal not national.
Well worth the read, Crome Yellow left me a little dazed and much saddened.