WHEN IN THE SPRINGTIME OF THE YEAR, WHEN THE TREES ARE CROWNED WITH LEAVES
WHEN THE ASH AND OAK AND BURCH AND YEW ARE DRESSED IN RIBBONS FAIR
WHEN OWLS CALL THE BREATHLESS MOON IN THE BLUE VEIL OF THE NIGHT
THE SHADOWS OF THE TREES APPEAR AMIDST THE LANTERN LIGHT
WE’VE BEEN RAMBLING ALL THE NIGHT
AND SOME TIME OF THIS DAY
NOW RETURNING BACK AGAIN
WE BRING A GARLAND GAY
It was at this very time of the year when I first listened to ‘The Mummer’s Dance’. I was searching for an escape, a way out of the winter’s end. There was dirty snow everywhere, but hints of spring came on the night winds. I’d slip out of the condo late at night and walk into the South End, where a century of Boston had passed and many of the brownstones that had seen it go by were still standing, silently watching. Who else had they seen dancing in the night?
Beneath a mystical moon I’d walk, watching it blink from behind the Prudential building, or peek out from what will always be known to me as the John Hancock tower. It changed its garb nightly, but the rows of brownstones remained the same, stalwartly guarding their denizens. I liked it best shrouded in clouds, when wisps of water vapor trailed around it like the most sumptuous silk. As the nights grew warmer, my steps grew livelier. The heart wants to dance. When will we let it?
AND SO THEY LINKED THEIR HANDS AND DANCED
ROUND IN CIRCLES AND IN ROWS
AND SO THE JOURNEY OF THE NIGHT DESCENDS
WHEN ALL THE SHADES ARE GONE.Back to Blog