Catapulting into Classical

A headlong leap into music, history, and composing

Haiku Wednesday: Schubert, Snow, and Gray Hair

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Stick figure with gray snowflakes falling on his head

Snow fell on my hair
Making it a shiny white.
I thought I’d turned gray.

And I was happy
To be close to journey’s end;
But it did not last,

For soon the snow thawed.
My black hair made me despair.
How far must I go?

From night until dawn
Many a head will turn gray,
But, sadly, not mine.

The above haiku is a paraphrase of Wilhelm Müller’s poem Der Greise Kopf, set to music by Franz Schubert.  It is part of Schubert’s epic song cycle Winterreise.  The song immediately precedes The Crow, previously described here.  The wanderer, having left his lover and the comforts of home, wanders through an inhospitable winter landscape. Here he seems to find the coating of snow making his hair gray ironic; he wishes he were old, and that his journey, that is, his wandering and his life, were closer to an end.  For him, bitterly, it is not to be.

Here is Der Greise Kopf performed by Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and Murray Perahia.

_____

Image attribution: Stick figure in snow by C. Gallant, 2017.

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One thought on “Haiku Wednesday: Schubert, Snow, and Gray Hair

  1. Oh dear- more depression… As if we don’t have enough reason to be. But what fabulous music, and of course F-D….

    T.

    Like

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