Music, London, 23 May 2007, Sale LO7402 Sotheby's, London, 2007, Wraps, , , Fine
151 pp. 192 lots. Highlights: Beethoven, The only surviving ms. of the violin sonata in A, Op. 47, ''Kreutzer,'' sold for 311,200 GBP. Illustrations: A 8 photos of Maria Callas, one reproduced full page on back of wraps; ms. page of George Crumb's Frozen Time; A Joseph Haydn thamatic catalog from 1805 hitherto unknown to scholars, 108,000 GBP. Mendelssohn, autograph ms. of three early songs, one unkown and one (Der Wasserfall) only incompletely known, for 21,600 GBP. Erik Satie: 20 lots, with 11 illustrations of autograph letters and manuscripts.A fine autograph ms. of Sibelius in blue ink of Malinconia, Op. 20, for cello and piano, for 43,200 GBP. Beautifully and generously illustrated throughout.
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A Musical Instrument
WHAT was he doing, the great god Pan,
Down in the reeds by the river?
Spreading ruin and scattering ban,
Splashing and paddling with hoofs of a goat,
And breaking the golden lilies afloat
With the dragon-fly on the river.
He tore out a reed, the great god Pan,
From the deep cool bed of the river;
The limpid water turbidly ran,
And the broken lilies a-dying lay,
And the dragon-fly had fled away,
Ere he brought it out of the river.
High on the shore sat the great god Pan,
While turbidly flow’d the river;
And hack’d and hew’d as a great god can
With his hard bleak steel at the patient reed,
Till there was not a sign of the leaf indeed
To prove it fresh from the river.
He cut it short, did the great god Pan
(How tall it stood in the river!),
Then drew the pith, like the heart of a man,
Steadily from the outside ring,
And notch’d the poor dry empty thing
In holes, as he sat by the river.
‘This is the way,’ laugh’d the great god Pan
(Laugh’d while he sat by the river),
‘The only way, since gods began
To make sweet music, they could succeed.’
Then dropping his mouth to a hole in the reed,
He blew in power by the river.
Sweet, sweet, sweet, O Pan!
Piercing sweet by the river!
Blinding sweet, O great god Pan!
The sun on the hill forgot to die,
And the lilies revived, and the dragon-fly
Came back to dream on the river.
Yet half a beast is the great god Pan,
To laugh as he sits by the river,
Making a poet out of a man:
The true gods sigh for the cost and pain—
For the reed which grows nevermore again
As a reed with the reeds of the river.