Barbra Brady

The Bay Lights on Palestrina

In Art on March 20, 2013 at 5:45 pm
The Bay Lights 3.19.13 8.39.44 PM

The Bay Lights 3.19.13 8.39.44 PM

Soundtrack: Palestrina’s Allergi Meserere. I didn’t plan this. Yes, I had already planned to listen to (what is for me) the calmest music in the world (psst, I was inspired by Guy Maddin’s film title The Saddest Music in the World there), Palestrina’s  Allegri Meserere. Synchronicity happens in this project. Tonight the bay was the calmest I’ve seen it.

When I hear this marvel-ous 16th century polyphony, my first association–it’s *very visceral–are the words: “My perfection,” ala “My Precious.” Hey, if Gollum isn’t of the viscera, nothing is.

Now, in the same setting that had fit Miles like a glove, I read the lights as a delicate shimmer, a lacing of lights. No jazz, all calm. The Palestrina takes my breath away, as does my ritual meditation on the bridge. In Palestrina’s surround, the lights are like gems in the eyes of God, diamonds ascending copper. A feather on the breath of God

And. Have you noticed Oakland in these screen shots? It’s that band of fire running under the left third of the bridge.

Water. Fire. Space. Air. Even earth (the platform below the camera). The presence of all five elements = a Divine source of power, perhaps why I am so devoted to my Meditation on the Bridge.

*My history with Palestrina

I was once a entire family all by myself. As the head of the household, I had the job of full-time Registrar at the Weatherspoon Art Museum, University of North Carolina Greensboro. At night, I became the house-holder, cooking, cleaning, the stereotypical hours of the stay-at-home personnel. I was already both “parents” when I decided to become the offspring in school, too. I enrolled in grad school. Man. Three family members in one very depleted woman.

Often I was wrought. And then over-the-top-ly so. When it felt roughest, there was one thing in particular that peeled away all stress, tension, and fatigue. When I sensed critical mass of overwhelm, Palestrina’s Allegri Meserere was an unfailing, instant hit of calm.

Enter the Bay Lights viewing, March 19 2013. See above.

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