Music, harvest, and time
Martinmas: falling as it does in mid November, it used to be a time a time that the year’s rents were settled,. the gathering in from the harvest sorted, and plans made for the drawing in of winter.
Harvest: the word suggests a natural unfolding of things, a place for time and space and taking in and transforming. Not unlike the process of creating a song or a poem or a story or a painting, or building a house, or nuturing a friendship. or raising a child, or building a community. Or any number of other things. that prosper with time, attention, thought, and care.
That time for growth and reflection, the telling of the long story, the connection with a past that is more that five hours or five years ago, seems to be less common in the present day. Short story and immediate response have their place, but theirs is not the only place, or necessarily the right or the best one.
There are a number of ways this connects to music, especially the sort of music I introduce you to here along the music road. Lively or quiet, most of it is necessarily contemplative and a way of connecting with the longer thoughts of the day and the year.
You’ve met songwriter and singer Cathie Ryan here along the music road. As part of her work as a musician she teaches workshops on singing, and on Irish mythology. “I think we are connected to the ancestors,” she says, “and it’s part of our work to find out what that connection is. That’s in the stories of the myths, and it’s in the songs too.”