train cantata




Such a sensuous experience, traveling in a rattling slow train with its windows open - immersed in sounds that smell like iron , sounds that feel like sheer wheezing speed. Never will an air-conditioned, shock-proof fast train be able to match this physical sensation of speed in a jangling local train.



I don’t suppose Bach has written any of his cantatas to be heard on a continuous bass of a rumbling train. But devoutly straining to follow the intertwining lines of a violin and an alto voice - instrument & human voice become interchangeable. And completely captive to these voices, it then hardly matters anymore whether the buzz of the basso continuo is the rumble of a train or of an organ.



6 comments:

Phoenix said...

so true, :-) nothing can compare with a leisurely train journey...though its been quite some time since my last/

highly recommended - a local train ride through the Indian countryside - a sumptous feast for the senses, if one is feeling adventurous enough, that is. you, my dear friend, would enjoy it, I think. :-)

ffflaneur said...

sumptuous train feast sounds very tempting - but how about an illustrated travelogue from an experienced guide before sending out a timid city-flaneur into the heat (my sources speak of 40°C!) and amongst the ants (my sources show they are HUGE!) ;-)

Roxana said...

oh yes, trains, my true and eternal love... and that mystery of my childhood, the "continuous bass of the rumbling train" in my ears, my head, my whole body, after I arrived home, the bed swinging, the images of the journey sweetly drifting away, how well the sleep tasted then :-)

ffflaneur said...

@R - à la recherche des trains perdus :-)
Indeed, a love of trains is born in childhood, as is an enduring faith in their promises --- (cars somehow lack this lost paradise romance)

Phoenix said...

:-D the travelogue will reach you one day. and the ants are quite amiable, contrary to what your sources may have suggested.

ffflaneur said...

:-D oh of course, if they're amiable ants! maybe my (otherwise very reliable) source just caught a particularly fearsome looking specimen