13 August, 2011

Old Songbook with Turn, Turn, My Busy Wheel

I bought an old songbook published in 1940 for use in Canadian schools, A Song Book compiled by Ethel A. Kinley, because I liked the looks of it and wanted to learn some old-fashioned songs.

The book contains English words set to the music for Gluck's Dein Leben Sei Begluckt (Turn, Turn, My Busy Wheel).  I tried picking out the melody on a piano but found the words more interesting.  The spinner sits by firelight as she spins yarn, dreaming of her past when she was crowned Queen of May and wondering about her future.  "Will the frail thread of life I twine run as smoothly as thine?" she asks her wheel.

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