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Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Sweet Nymphs

Dozens of people wander round the water tower's outside each day, which means we meet some extraordinary people.   Yesterday was no exception.

Pat and I were sitting on the 'Settle Down' bench in the evening sunshine when along came a smartly dressed 6ft 4" visitor who had visited earlier in the day.   He had returned to pick up his mobile phone which we had found.   Some detective work had traced him to Skipton.

It emerged in conversation that his many interests included 17th Century English music.   So grateful was he to have been reunited with his 21st Century phone that he took little coaxing to give us a magical solo recital of Rest, Sweet Nymphs - much to the astonishment of passers-by on the station drive!  There was absolutely no noise of any kind in Settle just then so they may have heard it in the Market Square.

Sound on and click the link below:

Rest, Sweet Nymphs

Rest Sweet Nymphs, by Francis Pilkington (1565-1638)

We reflected on the time the Kings Singers visited and gave us Blue Moon in acapella.   That was memorable but this was bizarre.     Imagine the scene - two people sat on a bench being serenaded in a former coal yard with

Rest, sweet nymphs, let golden sleep
Charm your star brighter eyes,
While my lute the watch doth keep
With pleasing sympathies.
Lulla, lullaby. Lulla, lullaby.
Sleep sweetly, sleep sweetly,
Let nothing affright ye,
In calm contentments lie.

Dream, fair virgins, of delight
And blest Elysian groves,
While the wandring shades of night
Resemble your true loves.
Lulla, lullaby. Lulla, lullaby.
Your kisses, your blisses,
Send them by your wishes,
Although they be not nigh.

Thus, dear damsels, I do give
‘Good night’, and so am gone:
With your hearts’ desires long live,
Still joy, and never moan.
Lulla, lullaby. Lulla, lullaby.
Hath pleased you and eased you,
And sweet slumber seized you,
And now to bed I hie.

A memorable, magical, madrigal.

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