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Review

Volume 10 • Number 2

Fall 2003


 

 

Inviting Pathways

by Elisabeth Le Guin

Annette Richards. The Free Fantasia and the Musical Picturesque. New Perspectives in Music History and Criticism. Edited by Jeffrey Kallberg, Anthony Newcomb, and Ruth Solie. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001. xiii, 256pp.

Beyond the French doors of the manor house, a landscape beckons: down the sweep of lawn, several stands of beeches are just going golden in the early autumn light, with the fertile promise of mushrooms in the duff beneath them; behind, a certain pillowed unevenness in the land and richness in the vegetation suggest a meandering stream. On a rise beyond that, just visible, the corner of an old stone building; there is the tracery of a path leading up to it: is it one of those marvelous village churches, still used by the locals for their simple devotions? Or a mossy, romantic ruin? Impossible to tell without getting closer. With the delightful urge to do just that, to explore this agreeable wilderness with its assurances of a fruitful solitude, the visitor feels her weariness from the long, dusty coach journey fall away. She moves toward the vista.

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