Concierto de Aranjuez
By Patricia Callan
Tuning, the guitarist Aaron Larget-Caplan bends his head, turns
The pegs a bit. The Concierto begins.
I. Allegro con spiritu
He holds the blond guitar like a child
on his lap, circled by black-clad
players suspended in time. He strums
what they know and now hear again.
The stick lifts – all are in – flutes,
violins spicatto, cellos, basses
layer on layer as clear as birds in Aranjuez.
Five minor chords. A lullaby?
An old Ladino lament, its dark tones
rising from the cor anglaise, wafting
over hills of scrub and bleached stone.
Wrist and fingers life, bending over
the frets, rending the heart’s muscle
as melody searches for the blind duende
crying from the shadow of flamenco.
III. Allegro gentile
Passing a cantina, we see lost niños catch
the folk tune, pop in and out, play tag
with the guitar, the flute, the piccolo,
French horn, bassoon, breathless all,
laughing trumpet-like at their game.
We see lively sound before our eyes,
frantic notes spinning to Aranjuez,
flicking fire into Spain, the world.
Copyright © 2021 by Patricia Callan.