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  • Scott Williamson

More "Winter Journey" inspiration

Author photo from a Munich train, Jan. 2019

This is a postscript to my previous post. Reading the (2-sentence!) paragraph below reminded me anew how Mann's protagonist Hans Castorp is a direct descendant of Müller's and Schubert's "Winter Wanderer."

from "Snow" in The Magic Mountain, Thomas Mann (Everyman Edition)

Was the wind bending him forward or was that soft white incline before him, veiled by dusky flurries, drawing him onward, pulling him down toward it? All he had to do was submit to it, lean just a little farther, and the temptation was very great – as great as he had seen it described in books, where it was termed typical and dangerous. But that in no way lessened the present, dynamic temptation, which claimed the prerogative of individuality, refusing to be relegated to the familiar and general or to be mirrored in such descriptions, and which declared itself unique and incomparably urgent – without, of course, being able to deny that it was a temptation whispered from one particular corner, the promptings of a creature in Spanish black with a snow-white, pleated ruff; and bound up with the idea and image were all sorts of gloomy, caustically Jesuitical, and misanthropic notions, the torture and corporeal punishment that were such abominations to Herr Settembrini, who with his barrel organ and ragione could only appear ridiculous in his opposition to them.

Gerhard Richter, "December"

Hope to see you in Amherst tomorrow (!) at 4 pm for my debut of this amazing, ageless song-cycle.

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