The New Lodger, Azaleas, and a Musical Snippet

Copyright 2013 by DM Denton

Copyright 2013 by DM Denton

The azalea flower was suggestive of the new lodger, with a passion for color itself, spraying out from its dramatic center like a cat’s whiskers for effect and purpose, rising stealthily through the shade to reach for the wind as much as the sun. After a nap and persuading her grandmother to try a little broth, Donatella spent the afternoon where buzzing wisteria and honeysuckle blurred the angles of walls also stepping up with budding hibiscus and geraniums to larger terracotta pots of bay and lemon trees surrounding a sunny plateau. A city sky was more available there than in the street, flat baskets drying basil, a rusty ironwork table and several chairs reminding how lunch or supper used to be taken for granted.

A House Near Luccoli Front View color adjusted cropped resizedFrom Chapter Three of A House Near Luccoli, published by All Things That Matter Press, my novel imagining an intimacy with the legendary 17th century Italian composer, Alessandro Stradella.

I recently followed an early music ensemble on Twitter called The Sonnambula Viol Consort. This consort is based in New York City. It’s director, Elizabeth Weinfield, contacted me through my website to thank me for connecting, and for my interest and work on Stradella. She also let me know of some Stradella concert activity that has been happening recently at Columbia University , sponsered by Artek Recordings, which included a lecture by foremost Stradella biographer, Carolyn Gianturco (who has read my novel and engaged me in some interesting email conversations as a result). It is so good to see Stradella being celebrated again!

Here is a snippet from Stradella’s Giovanni Battista, a rehearsal for the recent concert referred to above.

donatellasmallest©Artwork and writing, unless otherwise indicated, are the property of Diane M Denton. Please request permission to reproduce or post elsewhere with a link back to bardessdmdenton. Thank you.

11 thoughts on “The New Lodger, Azaleas, and a Musical Snippet

  1. What a lovely azalea painting – I love the sweet little bumble bees – I can almost hear them buzzing! The music was beautiful, too. And it’s wonderful to read about all the Stradella connections and contacts you are making. 🙂 ♥


    • Thank you so much, Barbara! I always enjoy painting bees … it is scary that their numbers are diminishing… let’s pray that can be turned around.

      I was delighted to hear that Stradella’s music is being played … especially here in the US! 🙂 XO ♥


  2. I love the excerpt – so poetic, so atmospheric – and I just love the music. Ever since I saw a performance of Atys by Jean-Baptiste Lully many years ago, baroque music has held a very special place in my heart. It just makes me dream!


    • Hi, Marie, and thank you for your lovely comment! What a wonderful performance that must’ve been to see live. I so agree with your reflection on baroque music … it is so intelligent and yet simple and magical, too. I love where it takes me. Have you seen the French movie, Tous les matin du monde? XO


  3. This is a particular favourite passage from your book Diane! I remember going over it twice when I was reading the book. It creates such a viivid image of where she was and I remember I wanted to be there with her as I do now!

    And as ever your illustration is beautiful. I love azaleas; we have some in the garden.

    And I am becoming very fond of Stradella’s music; and to think I had never even heard of him. Thank you for bringing him to life and how lovely for you that he lives on in the wonderful music that you love so much.

    Love and hugs



    • Hi, Christine! I am fond of that passage, too … there was some thought of taking it out during editing, but I just couldn’t. It makes me happy that you are enjoying Stradella’s music. I still can’t believe how little known his story and music are … so good to hear that his music is being performed, especially here in the US. Maybe someday my novel can be re-released with a CD attached! Perhaps when it’s made into a movie … (LOL I’m having one of those days (weeks!) when I feel like everything is IMpossible … so I’m pushing myself to … what is that saying? … ‘Shoot for the moon and you may end up among the stars’. Love and hugs, Diane ♥


  4. Hi Diane, what a beautiful drawing, and Viva Stradella! 🙂 Thank you for sharing the music, as well as your art. I really enjoy it!

    Love and hugs xx


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