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Madonna of the Evening Flowers

Madonna of the Evening Flowers - " Russellin1919,'.Thethree...

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Madonna of the Evening Flowers," set at Sevenels and composed in honor of Ada  Russell in 1919, is an opulent piece that displays Lowell's deft verbal abilities. The three- part text moves from simple description to sensuous impressionism. Composed in  unrhymed cadence, it draws energy from visual profusion, including oak leaves  feathered by the wind and late afternoon sun reflected off mundane objects — books,  scissors, and a thimble. From an unassuming domestic still life, the central stanza  follows the seeker into a religious vision sanctified by the pure heart of the unnamed  "you." Color and sound mount into a surreal chiming of bell-shaped garden flowers,  which enrich the holy setting with connections between their common name, Canterbury  bells, with the cathedral and shrine in southeastern England.
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  • Fall '08
  • staff
  • late afternoon sun, bell­shaped garden flowers, displays Lowell, unrhymed cadence, opulent piece, central stanza

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