Fall Equinox Song: Balance


Fall equinox is upon us, and this enters my favorite season of the year. It's not too hot, it's not too cold, it's just right for humans to live. And unlike spring, which certainly has its charms, there's newly harvested crop coming right from my garden so I can feast on fresh veggies. This year, as in many years' past, I'll be celebrating the season by focusing on Persephone and her journey to take up her throne in the Underworld at this time of the year, with some inspiration from the Eleusinian Mysteries of the past. But also quite notably, the theme of equinoxes is a point of balance, where you're not definitively on one side or the other.

Musically, the melody isn't that difficult, and the harmonies pretty standard. But rhythm, ah, that's another problem altogether. I'm sorry, that's how the first line came out, and I decided to go with it, the mad fool that I am. At least it's somewhat consistent: The chorus is 3+3+1+4+2+2+8/8, while the verses are 3+3+1+2+2+4+8/8, in both cases adding up to 23/8, or not quite as much time as you expect. In my defense, at the very least it's fitting with the tradition of additive rhythm, where larger rhythmic structures are built by adding possibly-different-lengthed chunks together (in contrast to dividing rhythm, where you take a large chunk of time and divide it into some number of equal parts), which is common in the folk music of Greece and the Balkans. So yes, that will feel a little bit off-kilter, which demonstrates to me the value of balancing things out by being so unbalanced.

All works are copyright by yours truly, but may be distributed under Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share-Alike 4.0. That means, in short, you can use them yourself and your grove, and play the song to your heart's content both in private and in public, but must give credit where credit is due, and if you're planning on selling something involving this song we need to talk about that first.

Sheet Music




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