Wednesday, April 1, 2015

April, Come She Will

A dear friend sent me the most beautiful CD of clear lilting music.  She listens to it during facials and bought two copies, one for me.  Track two is particularly lovely - it's music I imagine as the backdrop to some of my favorite April films.  I hear it echo as I think of Maud Baily in Possession weeping on the floor near her running bath after realizing that her life has been nothing if not loveless.  It plays again as Beth Goodwin in See You in the Morning stands riveted beside the piano of her dead husband.  It is the eve of her second marriage and she relives in detail, her first.  Each heartrending strain arouses my sympathy for her enduring devotion to the man who abandoned her by suicide.  I hear it again as Linda Radlett travels alone by train from Italy to France where she is leaving Christian in a flood of tears only to meet Fabrice, the soon-to-be love of her life in Love in a Cold Climate.  These women are the exemplar heroines of my favorite April movies and my new CD has me thinking of them in the car on my way to work these early spring days.

Until Mary Haynes in The Women (1939) decides to reunite with her estranged husband Stephen, her face is suffused with a sorrow that no number of diamond bracelets on her graceful wrist can erase. The delicate flute on Track 3 nearly has mist gathering in my eyes when I think of Mary's ache as she gently tells her child about Daddy's disappearance.  And the same flute pipes poignantly as friends gather near for the spring brunch she bravely hosts amidst her secret pain.

When Lottie Wilkins and Rose Arbuthnot in Enchanted April step forth into the Italian countryside after their rainy English winter, my heart sighs along with theirs.  Track 6 plays on as I almost smell the hibiscus and bougainvillea that embrace them along with the reaching arms of the sun.  But it is solitary Caroline Dester I root for in the end as she changes the most - just as the winds and husbands blow in, she transforms from femme-fatale to generous friend.  And love finds her yet.

All my April heroines have things in common besides being exquisitely fashionable:  they are determined, hardy survivors who come back to life in spring.  They suffer and lose and then create new worlds to inhabit and flourish in. Just as the earth renews itself alongside them.  The very spindles that prick their dainty fingers have the power to take them out...but it only serves to make them stronger.  

Track 10's triumphant chords are perfect for the final scenes when we discover that new beginnings often don't come at the beginning at all...sometimes, they come at last.  In April.

CD:  The Silent Path ~ Robert Haig Coxon (Thank you Kay!)


  1. My mind wandered today to the lovely music In a Christmas movie of all things!! The Family Stone has some beautiful music as we watch a son run to meet the tail lights of a stopped bus. We watch Diane Keaton's character gaze out on a snowy Christmas Eve. Finally the family Stone gather again on another Christmas Eve without their beloved mother. I'm thinking of April too but this movie and it's music transported me today to the warmth of Christmas as I waited for a doctor to check on my failing eyesight.

  2. Perfectly written, Donna, and I'm so glad you loved the CD as much as I do! And I love the Sleeping Beauty reference--it's my favorite fairy tale and truly does speak to awakenings big and small. Spring and Eastertide are all about resurrections of the heart and spirit...what a lovely essay to celebrate the season of hope! BTW, in case any of your readers wonder about the CD title, it's The Silent Path by Robert Haig Coxon. Hugs and love, Karen

  3. I put it under the post Kay. And I hope it gives hope to others. Thank you so much!

  4. Thank you for introducing me to "Love in a Cold Climate" - now one of my absolute favorites.

  5. I'm so glad's funny, dear, and the fashions are marvelous!