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Dorothy Barth

When I First Met Mendelssohn

February 13, 2010 at 4:04 PM

When I First Met Mendelssohn
by Dorothea Barth ©2010
When first I met Mendelssohn
The music made me swoon
In summer of my 15th year
My heart jumped o'r the moon
I played it for my teacher
One who was most renowned
And after a few measures passed
She stopped me, smiled, and frowned
It's lovely, dear, but truth must tell
It's not how it should be
And furthermore, it's far too late
You are no longer three!
With heavy heart and spirit sunk
I brought the tan book home
Forgotten dream, now tucked away
No longer mine to own
And through the years that followed
My studies did go on
I met the Bruch, Viotti too
But not the Mendelssohn
Until some decades later
(I was past 43)
I thirsted for the music
Found one to mentor me
I have no more illusions
I hastened to make clear
Lest verdict recapitulate
I did not want to hear
And then the music flourished
The repertory grew
And a long-lost friend appeared
The Mendelssohn anew
Begin with the Andante
Rehearse it nice and slow
Savor the shifts, caress the trills
And let the music flow
Surrendered to the song's delight
Long past our first romance
It sounded sweet, we made it right
Our unexpected chance

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