Charles E. Burchfield in his own words Share Tweet

Charles Burchfield, Journals, October 8, 1960

Thursday, October 11, 2018

I have been thinking of Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony these last few weeks, and playing Van Cluytons recording of it also.

It is futile to try to analyze this glorious music. Many have given their own explanation. Wagner called it the apotheosis of the dance—too trivial and confining for my feelings about it. I cannot avoid thinking about it as autumnal, but beyond that (which I am sure is not Beethoven’s thought)—it is so vast and elemental that IO think in the last analysis it should be listened to as music only. It carries me into vast unknown spaces far beyond this earth—and then, having said all of the above, I cannot help going back to the autumnal idea, and saying when I hear those last trumpet calls at the end of the first movement, I see high wooded mountains with red and yellow trees in full sunlight.

Charles Burchfield, October 8, 1960