Meditation 021 | Soft Season
A-Flat Major | Vol. II, Issue 8
Thank you for being here for the 21st installment of this newsletter.
Last month I mentioned that we were expecting the arrival of our baby boy at any moment. Well, he was born the day I sent that email — he’s one month old today!
His arrival has ushered in what I’ve been calling a “soft season.” Not that it isn’t hard — it is in some ways, of course. On the one hand, it’s been a season of adjustment, weird hours, and brief naps. But it’s been so delicate, too; a time with few commitments, wonderful support from loved ones, and long walks together in the burgeoning Pacific Northwest spring. It’s been still and slow, quiet and gentle.
🎵 This month’s piece is in A-flat major.
I had much less time this month, so a simpler piano piece was necessary. When I probably should have been sleeping, I opened the windows in my studio, sat down at the piano and wrote this little piece. The mics were capturing everything, so, in addition to the birds outside my window, you might hear my dog walking around.
Theory notes: You’ll hear some modal interchange in this song (i.e., chords borrowed from a different key). I borrow an F-flat major chord (what is referred to as a “flat 6”) from the song key’s parallel minor (A-flat minor), which provides a little color at a few points in the piece. I also borrow a C-flat major chord (a “flat 3”), also from the parallel minor.
📷 I took this month’s photo on film at Mirror Lake in Mt. Hood National Forest in Oregon.
I invite you to sit with this month’s song, photo, and poem and make them a small part of your day, whether that’s your morning ritual, afternoon break, or your evening wind-down.
As always, if you feel like it, let me know what you think in the comments. I’d love to hear from you.
Thank you again for being here.
The Well of Grief
by David Whyte
Those who will not slip beneath
the still surface on the well of grief,
turning down through its black water
to the place we cannot breathe,
will never know the source from which we drink,
the secret water, cold and clear,
nor find in the darkness glimmering,
the small round coins,
thrown by those who wished for something else.
The Creative Act: A Way of Being by Rick Rubin (Powell’s) (Thanks for loaning it to me, Libby!)
My Greedy Heart by Emile Mosseri (Listen)
Note: I put all the songs shared in the newsletter into this Spotify playlist
The podcast “On Being with Krista Tippett”. My favorite episode so far: “The Inner Landscape of Beauty” with John O’Donohue.
What have you been listening to? Let me know:
A must-watch from thecommunity:
If you’re wondering whether or not there is any rationale to the order of these songs, I assure you there is. I’m following the well-traveled path of musicians before me who have written pieces in all 24 musical keys, making my way around “the circle of fifths” in music.
Soft Season in A-flat major / Written and produced by Fog Chaser / Recorded in Logic Pro
Soft Season / 35mm film (Fujifilm Superia / ISO 400) / Mirror Lake, Mt. Hood National Forest, Oregon, USA / Order a print.