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Oswald's Flowers - March 2020

Please enjoy this Bouquet of James Oswald's Flowers from Airs for the Seasons

Covid-19 has changed our world very quickly in a lot of ways; right now it's not possible to safely get together to enjoy live music. This means upcoming in-person Communitea Chamber Music concerts will postponed for the foreseeable future including March's concert Oswald's Flowers, which would have taken place tonight at 7 PM. Right now more than ever, we need art. Therefore here's a virtual sampling of March's concert. 



The opening pastorale from James Oswald's "The Thistle" from Airs for the Seasons with Francis Liu on baroque violin, Kevin Devine on harpsichord, and Sarah Stone on viola da gamba.

The Thistle is Scotland's National Flower of Scotland. In England, it's the rose, in Wales, the daffodil, and in Ireland, the shamrock. In the language of flowers, (aka floriography; a way to send coded messages through floral arrangements) the thistle means endurance and unity. To start our virtual concert, we offer the opening pastorale movement of Scottish cellist/composer James Oswald's (1710-1769) take on the humble Thistle, paired with a poem by Robert Burns


Tae a Thistle By Robert Burns (1759-1796) Tae scots yer Mair than just a flower, Yer a symbol o' great strength an' power, Wrapped in shades o' purple an' green Yer the bonniest flower this land has seen.

Some folks say yer jist a weed, But we scots ken yer a mighty breed. Yer delicate yet strong an' bold, An' worth mair tae us than silver or gold.

Aye yer loved by Scottish heart's, An' ye always wur right fae the start, Wi' yer purple heeds and spiny stems, Yer the richest 'o all oor Scottish gems.



Please accept this bouquet and it's accompanying message:

The Ox-Eye Daisy Patience The Blue Periwinkle Pleasures of Memory The Myrtle Love The Rose Love Sending you patience, remembering better times, and a double dose of love.



Sonnet LIV William Shakespeare (1564-1616) O, how much more doth beauty beauteous seem By that sweet ornament which truth doth give! The rose looks fair, but fairer we it deem For that sweet odour which doth in it live. The canker-blooms have full as deep a dye As the perfumed tincture of the roses, Hang on such thorns and play as wantonly When summer's breath their masked buds discloses: But, for their virtue only is their show, They live unwoo'd and unrespected fade, Die to themselves. Sweet roses do not so; Of their sweet deaths are sweetest odours made: And so of you, beauteous and lovely youth, When that shall fade, my verse distills your truth.



How can you help Communitea LIC during Covid-19? Buy Gift Certificates! Call 718-729-7708

This was Communitea LICs most recent message on Instagram:  "Dear friends and neighbors, We have decided to make Thursday our last day for take-out for the sake of our staff and communal health. We leave you with this image of one of our most popular sandwiches to hold on to until we can all return to business as (hopefully) usual! Stay home & stay well!"



In the language of flowers, the snow drop means hope. Here is James Oswald's "The Snow Drop" from Airs for the Seasons, meaning that this virtual concert ends with hope.

Stay Safe and Healthy!


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