Sunday, August 18, 2013

August 15, 2013

Only when you leave – you love! In two weeks and three days my friend and I will move into our new home – a townhouse thirty some minutes north of the city. So seemingly fictional - so actually real!
Meanwhile, the summer seems to already hint its end. Its warm air makes room for a cooler caressing morning breeze, endlessly pleasant and evoking solemn sadness due to the summer which had past like sand between our fingers, and old memories of romantic loneliness which wrap the soul like the inner layers of a tree trunk. This morning I already had to wear a sweatshirt!

My present apartment downtown is slowly starting to become empty of belongings. Every few days, my friend and I are moving another load. Before we started, I videotaped the apartment, so that I can remember how it was when I lived in it. How astonishing is the amount of details which surrounds our lives: the pattern of the fabric which covers the pillows of the sofa in the living room, the texture of the old wooden floor in its midst, to the feet of the old Brambach piano which was in the apartment already before I moved in. Wherever the eye looks, it meets an incomprehensible wealth of details, impossible to grasp and hold – each one of them is like a fraction of time within the endless continuum of time, one grain of sand out of the sand on the beach along the seashore, yet within it alone complete happiness lies; one moment which you could write a whole book about, opening to eternities - a moment in which eternity is concealed!

This is also how I felt a couple days ago when I went out for a walk in order to enjoy the singularly wonderful evening air. Seemingly, a simpleminded walk, but in reality an entire opera filled with dramas and eventful moments: all the people I have passed by, all the thoughts which have crossed my mind, all my physical sensations…

And last night, already at seven-thirty in the evening I lay down in bed, to look at the leaves in the window fluttering in the first wind of autumn, and at the light bluing before sunrise the wall adjacent to my bed, with blueness which seems to belong to another world – the world of dreams. I thought I would lie like that for an hour, but only this morning I found it in myself to get up and write.

(From “One-Time”, Volume II, by Eyran Katsenelenbogen; translated from Hebrew)

Saturday, August 3, 2013

August 3, 2013

            Quarter past four in the morning
            And the world has come to a rest
            Outside, there’s a wondrous silence
            And it is balanced with
            The peace within the chambers of the soul
            Only a lonely bird
            Is trying with its chirping to disturb it from afar

            The rain which came down earlier has ceased
            And cool air, unbearably pleasant
            Enters into the room through the slightly opened windows
            Caresses my soul
            I feel fatigue
            Relaxed and relaxing
            Under the sky-blue quilt
            The soles of my feet caress each other

            One can feel closer
            To the eternal-moment
            Listen to its murmur
            Sense its presence
            Time has reposed from its race
            Like a tired horse
            It walks in the paths of the forest
            While around it the trees are breathing
            Under their wet leaves
            And its hoofs are touching above
            Their thick roots
            Which intertwine exposed

                                                June 12, 2013
(From “One-Time” by Eyran Katsenelenbogen; translated from Hebrew)

Saturday, June 15, 2013

June 14, 2013

Under the warm blanket
I listen to the music of the rain
To the hollow percussive sound of its drops on the leaves

Above the luscious leafage of the trees

A moment of a drop
Out of its eternal showers

Slowly glides on top of one leaf

Clinging onto its felt-like surface
For another shattered fragment of time

And in the background, a lonely bird laments

The suffering-song of its existence

                                                            June 14, 2013
From One-Time by Eyran Katsenelenbogen
translated from Hebrew)


מִתַּחַת לַשְּׂמִיכָה הַחֲמִימָה

אֲנִי מַקְשִׁיב לִנְגִינַת־הַגֶּשֶׁם

לִנְקִישָׁתָן הַחֲלוּלָה שֶׁל טִפּוֹתָיו עַל הֶעָלִים

מֵעַל שִׁפְעַת עַלְוַת־הָעֵצִים


מִתּוֹךְ נֵצַח מִמְטָרָיו

מַחְלִיקָה לְאִטָּהּ מֵעַל עָלֶה

נִצְמֶדֶת בְּמַעֲטֶה־הַלֶּבֶד

לְעוֹד רְסִיס שֶׁל זְמַן

וּבָרֶקַע מְקוֹנֶנֶת צִפּוֹר בּוֹדְדָה

שִׁיר סִבְלוֹת־קִיּוּמָהּ

                              14 יוני 2013


Monday, May 27, 2013

October 27, 2012

        The Fountain of Youth
        Flows into the
        Lake of Knowledge 

                               October 27, 2012
From One-Time by Eyran Katsenelenbogen

Sunday, May 26, 2013

May 26, 2013

It is Sunday, shortly after nine in the morning, and I’m writing in my bed, covered with a sky blue quilt blanket which I found a few months ago inside a suitcase in the storage room, after it was left behind in the apartment by one of the roommates or subletters. Two purple yoga blocks which I keep at all times by my bed are supporting below my elbows on both sides as I write. Also while I sleep, I love leaning my leg on top one of them. 

Outside, behind the barred windows of my room, the greenery of the trees can be seen, and their branches are moving in the wind. I can lie down like this for hours and look at the leaves fluttering above the branches – their sight calms my soul, and sometimes I fall back asleep. How easy it is to forget and ignore the things which are so wonderful, like the swaying of the quivering leaves above the branches of the trees as they are nodding in the wind. 

It seems like writing doesn’t happen now by itself. It requires great mental strength, and because of my mental fatigue I find it more difficult to write. Daily worries create mental fatigue in which the danger of dissipation of inspiration lies. Yesterday after I came back home in the evening I wanted to sit and write, but did not have the energy to do so. I lied in my bed, under the light-blue blanket, and watched the leaves in my window which were lit by the street lamp posted outside above the pavement. It felt good and was the only thing I wanted – to lie down by myself in peace and quite and look at them while they are thatching the chambers of my soul.   

Friday, May 17, 2013

May 13, 2013

        Only when you leave, you love.
                                                    ~ Eyran

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

April 23, 2013

Is the thought 
"Is the thought a deed
Or a thought?” 
A deed 
Or a thought?...

                                May 1996
From One-Time by Eyran Katsenelenbogen


Wednesday, April 3, 2013

The Not So Well Tempered Clavier - An Improvised Diary

April 29, 2013: I am sharing today a practice recording with Kim, my wonderfully talented young student:

Stella by Starlight (Young) - Practice Recording

April 28, 2013: Originally, I planned to document in The Not So Well Tempered Clavier Improvised Diary only my work related to Bach, but very quickly I found myself using this diary to share practice recording of jazz standards which I end up playing after reading Bach and working on sequences developed from his Preludes and Fugues. Below is a practice recording of Easy to Love (Porter).

Easy to Love (Porter) - Practice Recording

April 21, 2013: It seems that this is becoming a sort of a diary inside a diary, or maybe some kind of a log documenting my work on the Bach project. I thought about including a nine-page transcription of a dream which I had on April 12, but in the end decided it would better fit in the second volume of OneTime, the book i have been working on since 1989. Instead, I am sharing two practice recordings of Tune Up (Davis) which followed my Bach practicing a week and a half ago.

Tune Up (Davis), Take 2 - Practice Recording

Tune Up (Davis), Take 1 - Practice Recording 

April 5, 2013: I'm sharing today two practice recordings from Wednesday's session, one of another improvisation in G# Minor, and another of Autumn Leaves, which is on my "To Record" list:). Btw - you can download any of these tracks by right-clicking on the screen as they play and saving them to your hard-drive.

Autumn Leaves

Improvisation in G# Major

April 3, 2013: I have recently started working on my new Bach project: The Not So Well Tempered Clavier - Improvisations inspired by Bach's Preludes and Fugues in twelve ascending keys. In this diary I will familiarize myself with practice recording takes and share my work process. At the moment, the work involves playing through Bach's Well Tempered Clavier and working on elements which inspire improvisation, such as his wonderful sequences and themes of his Fugue. Below is the first two practice recordings, an improvisations in G# Minor and G# Major.      

Improvisation in G# Minor

Improvisation in G# Major

Monday, March 25, 2013

March 25, 2013

          One man’s freedom
          Is another man’s prison

                                            March 25, 2013