Is there anybody there, said the traveller...

Ella Beck

Verses that I hope won't remind me of MIMF for too much longer - from the Old English (Anglo-Saxon) poem 'The Ruin' -

Beorht wæron burgræced, burnsele monige,
heah horngestreon, heresweg micel,
meodoheall monig mondreama full,
oþþæt þæt onwende wyrd seo swiþe.
Crungon walo wide, cwoman woldagas,
swylt eall fornom secgrofra wera;
wurdon hyra wigsteal westen staþolas,
brosnade burgsteall. Betend crungon
hergas to hrusan. Forþon þas hofu dreorgiað,
ond þæs teaforgeapa tigelum sceadeð
hrostbeages hrof. Hryre wong gecrong
gebrocen to beorgum, þær iu beorn monig
glædmod ond goldbeorht gleoma gefrætwed,
wlonc ond wingal wighyrstum scan;
seah on sinc, on sylfor, on searogimmas,
on ead, on æht, on eorcanstan,
on þas beorhtan burg bradan rices.

Bright were the castle buildings, many the bathing-halls,
high the abundance of gables, great the noise of the multitude,
many a meadhall full of festivity,
until Fate the mighty changed that.
Far and wide the slain perished, days of pestilence came,
death took all the brave men away;
their places of war became deserted places,
the city decayed. The rebuilders perished,
the armies to earth. And so these buildings grow desolate,
and this red-curved roof parts from its tiles
of the ceiling-vault. The ruin has fallen to the ground
broken into mounds, where at one time many a warrior,
joyous and ornamented with gold-bright splendour,
proud and flushed with wine shone in war-trappings;
looked at treasure, at silver, at precious stones,
at wealth, at prosperity, at jewellery,
at this bright castle of a broad kingdom.
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Ella Beck

Another poem about isolation and alone-ness: 'I am' by John Clare.

I am—yet what I am none cares or knows;
My friends forsake me like a memory lost:
I am the self-consumer of my woes—
They rise and vanish in oblivious host,
Like shadows in love’s frenzied stifled throes
And yet I am, and live—like vapours tossed

Into the nothingness of scorn and noise,
Into the living sea of waking dreams,
Where there is neither sense of life or joys,
But the vast shipwreck of my life’s esteems;
Even the dearest that I loved the best
Are strange—nay, rather, stranger than the rest.

I long for scenes where man hath never trod
A place where woman never smiled or wept
There to abide with my Creator, God,
And sleep as I in childhood sweetly slept,
Untroubling and untroubled where I lie
The grass below—above the vaulted sky.
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Ella Beck

There was a flurry of new posts by different members that got me hopeful for a while, but now we're back to the same old same old... :cry:

Ella Beck

Looking through the old posts on MIMF brought to mind Thomas Hardy's poem, 'Friends Beyond'.
W[SIZE=-1]ILLIAM[/SIZE] D[SIZE=-1]EWY,[/SIZE] Tranter Reuben, Farmer Ledlow late at plough,
Robert’s kin, and John’s, and Ned’s,
And the Squire, and Lady Susan, lie in Mellstock churchyard now!

“Gone,” I call them, gone for good, that group of local hearts and heads;
Yet at mothy curfew-tide,[SIZE=-2] 5[/SIZE]
And at midnight when the noon-heat breathes it back from walls and leads,

They’ve a way of whispering to me—fellow-wight who yet abide—
In the muted, measured note
Of a ripple under archways, or a lone cave’s stillicide:

“We have triumphed: this achievement turns the bane to antidote,[SIZE=-2] 10[/SIZE]
Unsuccesses to success,
Many thought-worn eves and morrows to a morrow free of thought.

“No more need we corn and clothing, feel of old terrestrial stress;
Chill detraction stirs no sigh;
Fear of death has even bygone us: death gave all that we possess.”[SIZE=-2] 15[/SIZE]

W. D.—“Ye mid burn the wold bass-viol that I set such vallie by.”
Squire.—“You may hold the manse in fee,
You may wed my spouse, my children’s memory of me may decry.”

Lady.—“You may have my rich brocades, my laces; take each household key;
Ransack coffer, desk, bureau;[SIZE=-2] 20[/SIZE]
Quiz the few poor treasures hid there, con the letters kept by me.”

Far.—“Ye mid zell my favorite heifer, ye mid let the charlock grow,
Foul the grinterns, give up thrift.”
Wife.—“If ye break my best blue china, children, I sha’n’t care or ho.”

All—“We’ve no wish to hear the tidings, how the people’s fortunes shift;[SIZE=-2] 25[/SIZE]
What your daily doings are;
Who are wedded, born, divided; if your lives beat slow or swift.

“Curious not the least are we if our intents you make or mar,
If you quire to our old tune,
If the City stage still passes, if the weirs still roar afar.”[SIZE=-2] 30[/SIZE]

Thus, with very gods’ composure, freed those crosses late and soon
Which, in life, the Trine allow
(Why, none witteth), and ignoring all that haps beneath the moon,

William Dewy, Tranter Reuben, Farmer Ledlow late at plough,
Robert’s kin, and John’s, and Ned’s,[SIZE=-2] 35[/SIZE]
And the Squire, and Lady Susan, murmur mildly to me now.


Ella Beck

However, in the last few days, some longstanding members have begun posting again.

I just wish there was a 'like' system on MIMF, as there is on Talk Classical and Facebook, so I could say how pleased I am.

Ella Beck

Looking at the numbers viewing - I'm the only member on MIMF right now - there are only one or two reading the general discussion forums, and only 9 reading the classical music forum, but 73 reading the Pipe Organ Forum.

I think this is MIMF's core value to the internet and that even if the forum doesn't recover, the Pipe Organ Forum will be a useful Internet Archive.

John Watt

If this can soothe your fretting font fingers, this made me feel better today.
For the first time in over a year I'm not seeing my name all over the right hand side.
I used to ask other members to post something so it always wasn't my name,
but that didn't happen very often.
I even posted in MusikDanish just to be doing something different.
I decided to start a couple of threads and focus on that.
Why was I so concerned, I really don't know, just feeling self-conscious,
and I'm used to seeing my name in lights, as a musician and sign-maker.
I never did say let me illuminate you, but I should have.

If hearing about something worse helps, dig this.
I paid the annual registration and covered the last four months of hosting,
for a music domain of my own, but I haven't even got it up online.
This might be the first time in my life I have paid for something I haven't used.

Ella Beck

A few more people have started posting on MIMF - generally to post music for me and others to enjoy.
I like to listen to what they've shared and post a message of appreciation.
It is very nice to have these threads, and we have some talented musicians on this forum.

There still don't seem to be many threads where members conduct a sustained conversation, however.
On all the other forums I belong to, that is a given.

So what's going wrong here?

I think readers will form their own conclusions, as have I.

I still think relevance is the key.
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John Watt

All life on earth, as are the living vibrations we call music, relevant to me.
If that's not all together, nothing is as good as it can be.
A more sustained conversation, if that's your description of lengthy postings,
is the best for me, being a font-full as well as a fret-full fingerer of facts.
Too bad I'm not writing my weekly newspaper music column, missing that press pass.
Hmmm... I wonder if it would get me anywhere in Denmark.

I'm still amazed at this electrical magic,
accessing this photo in my computer here in the Niagara Peninsula,
and seeing how almost immediately it transfers here for download.


Ella Beck

I think the same things apply to conversation online as they do in real life.
This link says it all:

In real life it's polite to listen to what someone is saying - online, it's polite to actually read their post.

In real life, people won't want to talk to Fred if every time they have a conversation, Fred ignores the topic and twists it just to tell them about what he likes, what he's doing, his family background etc. The same online.

In real life, if someone asks his friends to listen to a tune he's learned to play on the piano, and most of the people listening think it's great, but Fred jumps up and says it's not half as good as six or seven versions by well-known artistes & that the people who liked it must have no taste - well, how rude is that?
And the same online.

In real life, people take turns and there is an exchange of ideas, rather than long monologues from one or more people talking. Online, people generally don't read long screeds.
I apologise for this one. :)

In real life, if there are people who don't follow the conventions of normal discourse or conversation, people avoid their company.
Online... - hey, go figure.
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Ella Beck

I am glad that some more people have come onto MIMF over the Christmas period. Of course, many more are needed before the forum becomes viable. But in the absence of genuine conversation - will they come? :cry:

John Watt

These last few posts are new for me, and what for Ella Beck is a diatribe is my favorite.
However, I would never want to be accused of accusing someone of having bad taste.
Why? Because "bad taste" isn't terminology I use to refer to anything except my taste buds.
Even in terms of talking about myself, I would sooner say I don't know or never did that,
instead of saying what I'm playing is the result of "bad taste".
If someone goes beyond the existing musicianship of any musical attempt, family or not,
to compare it to more accomplished recordings, that's not being rude unless you make it that way.
That's taking what you're listening to and trying to uplift it, showing a potential to grow.
What others need to do is call me out on that, saying show us or you do it.
That's only a serious and sober approach.
My favorite compliment is someone saying I made them a real musician. That's always exciting.

The only time, in my entire life, that has ever been a problem for me,
is because I don't have my guitar and there isn't a lefty body with a right-handed neck available.
But that's okay... because I can sing it.
If you can't sing it, you can't play it,
unless you're happy with the connection between your eyes and your fingers,
as you read sheet music, where it's just your mind, a process that can make you soul-blind. Here's another detriment.
If you were sitting there just staring at your sheet music, having to stare at it and nothing else,
you could be playing your part, and then at the end of the performance, able to look around,
you could be seeing any type of music and performers all around you,
which could be good, bad or horrible, depending how appalling some people and lifestyles can be.
When you're out there to make money, you have to draw your own lines,
and that's not any kind of line you can find between the staffs in front of you.

I'm not worried about a conversation gone wrong here, because I'm being ignored.
Let me end with a new word I just made up.
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John Watt

As far as "online, people don't read such long screeds", that is totally wrong here in North America.
I'm not going to jam up this thread with links to major newspapers who are online,
all in financial trouble with print or having abandoned it already to be just online,
where most North Americans get their news.
New statistics show the average American spends over six hours a day looking at screens.
If you want to say that watching TV news and shows through YouTube also counts,
that is also not reading, just watching and listening.

I know who could deal with this. Mozart. Okay, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
He'd be the first to have sheet music with computer colourization,
so players could access variations of keys, levels of difficulty, or short or long versions.
He'd be conducting with sticks connected to the internet, or the WIFI inside the venue,
and I know they would glow a hot colour like the ecstasy ravers use at electronica parties.
Or a Star Wars laser sword. Some of his music would need that.
I just thought of the name for a new, acoustic duo.
Beck'n'Call. Followers can say I'm going to see them so I can be at their beck and call.

Ella Beck

Have just had a look at the viewing figures. In December, I thought they were a bit better, but they've reverted to their usual measliness in the New Year.

It was nice to see a post from our Administrator, Krummhorn, yesterday, thought. :)
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Ella Beck

I quote from a poem The Listeners by Walter de la Mare. A mysterious horseman calls at a house that he'd promised to visit, but there's no reply, though he senses that there are ghosts listening.

The poem concludes -
....he suddenly smote on the door, even
Louder, and lifted his head:—

‘Tell them I came, and no one answered,
That I kept my word,’ he said.
Never the least stir made the listeners,
Though every word he spake
Fell echoing through the shadowiness of the still house
From the one man left awake:
Ay, they heard his foot upon the stirrup,
And the sound of iron on stone,
And how the silence surged softly backward,
When the plunging hoofs were gone.

That's how I feel about MIMF.

I've just discovered the video. :D


John Watt

I'd really like to post some more about the motivations of senior players,
but seeing Krummhorn there, almost as much as seeing anyone elses' name,
instead of mine all the time, means I'm leaving that alone for now.
That was a nice posting, even if Krummhorn is too nice.

"The moon cussers cussed the moon when it was shining bright,
because the moon cussers dirty work could only be done on a dark and moonless night.
The moon cussers..... ooooo!"

And no matter what anybody says,
the ancestors of Ella Beck were never moon cussers,
and any boats lured onto the rocks at night by any of their campfires,
was purely accidental.
She's got one bottle left from those sail-boat days in her attic to prove it.
Maybe that's why Krummhorn is being too nice.
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Ella Beck

Another poem that reminds me of MIMF, though the real answer to this riddle is 'an egg'.

In marble halls as white as milk
Lined with skin as soft as silk
Within a fountain crystal clear
A golden apple doth appear
No doors there are to this stronghold
Yet thieves break in and steal the gold
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Ella Beck

Here's another poem that reminds me of some of the exchanges on MIMF, where people see & read only what they want to, not what's there! :)

Old Woman, Old Woman, wilt thou go a-shearing?
Speak a little louder, girl, I'm very hard of hearing.

Old Woman, Old Woman, shall we start a-washing.
Speak a little louder, girl - don't mumble in that fashion.

Old Woman, Old Woman - shall we go a-walking?
Speak a little louder, girl - or what's the use of talking?

Old Woman, Old Woman - shall I kiss you dearly?
Thank you very kindly, girl - I hear you very clearly!