Continuing my sonnet sequence, this month’s muse, Euterpe, is the patron of music… and so I decided to consider music in the cosmic sense, as woven into all of creation. Echoes of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion can be heard here, but I was mainly drawing on the medieval imagery of the seven heavens (the spheres) and their harmony (expressed as ‘the music of the spheres’). Readers may be interested to note that in the medieval model of the cosmos, everything below the sphere of the Moon was changeable and transitory; above the Moon, the spheres were perfect and unchanging. Since May is traditionally the month dedicated to Mary, the Mother of God, I’ve also woven in a Marian reference (to the Angelus). I hope, in this poem, to celebrate music in all its aspects…
The Music of the Spheres
There’s no such thing as silence, only sound.
Ordered, graceful, the music of the spheres
Reverberates in every atom, bounds
From star to star: a song we can’t quite hear,
Except in hints and glimpses: in the hush
Of twilight, crickets with their tiny words;
Or the subtle ebb and flow and rush
Of blood within our veins: more felt than heard.
High circling gulls against the blue, and sparrows
Darting quick into the hedge; the air before
The rain, and after; mossy bridges, furrows
In farmers’ fields: woven in the cosmic score,
A secret song. And we, below the Moon,
Can add our praises: evening, morning, noon.
Holly is a poet, teacher, and apologist exploring the intersection of literature and faith, reason and imagination. She is the author of the memoir Not God’s Type: An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Arms.