The life symphony, opus 2019 is in the last segment of its finalé. Has the piece unfolded as promised during its prelude this January? Did your personal orchestra have a dream to play? Was it an intense vision? Were there many unexpected changes? Were there surprise cameo appearances of new players? Were there players who departed during the performance? Did you have an outline to follow in the score or was the opus an improvisation? Has opus 2019 sounded melancholy, exciting, peaceful, or as a combination of emotional states?
I have a tradition of listening to Beethoven’s “Symphony Number 9 in D minor, Opus 125” each December 31st. If I’m very busy, I only play the last movement–“An die Freude”. I like to crank up the stereo’s volume to the level where the windows almost rattle. Around the middle of the final movement, Beethoven changed the key from D minor to D major to stress the choral performance of Heinrich Schiller’s verse. That change always gives me goosebumps.
If you’re not a big fan of Ludwig van Beethoven, do you ever imagine the unfolding of the year with a different musical composer? If not Symphony Number 9, is your year some other classical piece? Do you hear jazz–Dixieland or modern? Is your year laid back ambient in the form of a soundtrack to your life? Is your favorite pop or rock song more suited? Perhaps an ethnic style, such as music from Japan, India, Aboriginal, African, Native American, or other traditional music representing your family’s heritage? Maybe you would rather indulge in peaceful silence to enhance a contemplative mood.
Did your musical year earn a spot in the Top Ten charts or has it shown up in the middle or the lower ranks of the Top 100? Maybe your opus 2019 will be relegated to the cut-out bin of life. Do they even have cut-out bins anymore? Cut-out bins were always full of records that flopped. Sort of like remaindered books, or Broadway shows that closed immediately after their premiers.
I have plenty of low to middle ranked opuses in my annual archived collection. This time, opus 2019 opened to mixed audience reviews. I know I could have been more skillful in its composition. At least there is the opportunity to try again tomorrow, when I begin to compose the score for my opus 2020.
The Blue Jay of Happiness quotes poet Ogden Nash.
“Tonight’s December thirty-first,
Something is about to burst.
The clock is crouching, dark and small,
Like a time bomb in the hall.
Hark, it’s midnight, children dear.
Duck! Here comes another year!”