Lightly Child, Lightly.

Music— organized by melody, harmony, but sometimes we’re most struck by the mass of sound, the absurd (intellectually speaking) accumulation of noises, the magnificent, physically compelling actualization of the instruments’ power— as sometimes in Bruckner we feel the bows vibrating, the cellos’ heavy hair swimming alongside the bass cry of the trumpets and trombones, sometimes in Wagner, or more recently, in the first movement of Henryk Gorecki’s Third Symphony, when slow as the dawn, the orchestra’s cocoon unfolds— or, a different metaphor, we can imagine the hull of a massive ship emerging, slowly, from the mist. This incredibly sensual, palpable wall of sound stirs our entire body, but remains unseen. And perhaps it’s precisely this contrast— between overwhelming presence and invisibility— that moves us, leads us, momentarily, to another world, another way of being that we can only visit.

~ Adam Zagajewski, Slight Exaggeration: An Essay (April 4, 2017)


  • Photo: janae (@janaeture)  (via Your Eyes Blaze Out)
  • Prior “Lightly child, lightly” Posts? Connect here.
  • Post Title & Inspiration: Aldous Huxley: “It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them.”
  • Related Posts: Adam Zagajewski



  1. what a lovely, and most accurate description of music.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Humming.
    …trying not to smile…..

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wonderful description when it’s so difficult to explain the magic of music. Two weeks ago I attended Tanglewood (western MA) and listened to the Boston Symphony’s rendition of Beethoven’s 9th. I sobbed like a baby – that much beauty is hard to take in.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Incredible what music does for me, from casting a spell of stillness, or tears, to ramped up speed on the treadmill, and even dancing around the kitchen.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Been listening to some old Joan Armatrading lately – her music from that time period transports me into a kind of ‘stoned’ feeling. Lyrics can be powerful, powerful stuff: (this one i can FEEL. sorry for the lousy video)
    Aloha, David 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Wonderful description of music…

    Liked by 1 person

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