Soundscape Strata

Written by: Odin Roark

Soundscape Strata

Did Bach know to what end
his harvest of melodies-in-parallel would become?

Scholars agonize

Was creation of counterpoint
musical destiny
a hybrid fruit of beauty
knowing no boundary
bewildering those of first look
given musical staffs
voicings and manuscripts
always conformed to traditional confinement?

What spurred his palette of sound
to become one with the elusive rainbow
providing independence through marriage of numbers
allowing prolonged courtship
sanctioning destinies to verge
return to coalesce?

And so

From guitar
to clavichord
string quartets
to symphonies
counterpart airs were discovered
became melodious architecture
challenging new musical frontiers
voiding tundra's boundary rules
reducing history's brass survey monuments
to mere reflections of past memory

Popularization of Bach's invention
soared beyond the artistic elite
for in '55 "Picnic" graced movie screens
initiating the unsuspecting
elevating emotion with layered melodies
Moonglow playing under the love theme
Bach's kaleidascope of synchronous colors
reached the century's romantics
keyed into a music major
minored ala Brubeck
scat-a-tized via Ella and Mel
made unity of opposites a given


From Bach's synthesis of two dimensions
musical ironies evolved
influencing writers' language
line upon line
stanza to stanza
chapter to chapter
making magical
the double entendre
contrapuntal imaginings
all translated into
infinite language-in-progress

With applause knowing nowhere to go
except to acknowledge the roots of prodigy
a high five to the man
who pioneered so much of our soundscape
taught us all the numbers of romance
ironically created attraction to opposites
arpeggios with many colors
intimacy amidst chaos

Encore Mr. Bach