Listen to the sound of biodiversity

Our 2021 Summer Intern Isabella shared about the biodiversity at Gathering Ground through music. She takes us on a journey to understand the importance and the harmony of biodiversity.

Isabella, who is majoring in Environmental Studies and Flute Performance, found a way to meld both disciplines at Gathering Ground. Talk about crosspollination!

As she explains in the video below, she was inspired by the book Braiding Sweetgrass, by Robin Wall Kimmerer, which was part of our reading this summer. In the book, Kimmerer talks about the power of poetry and metaphor, equating it to botanists’ field studies:

“When botanists go walking the forests and fields looking for plants, we say we are going on a foray. When writers do the same, we should call it a metaphoray, and the land is rich in both. We need them both; scientist and poet Jeffrey Burton Russell writes that ‘as the sign of a deeper truth, metaphor was close to sacrament. Because the vastness and richness cannot be expressed by the overt sense of a statement alone.'”

Isabella used melody as metaphor, breaking down Vivaldi’s Piccolo Concerto in C Major into separate parts, each one representing a single aspect of the biodiversity in our orchard and vineyard.

Watch this video to listen to the themes of the chestnut trees, soil, and vineyard. Hear them all working together in harmony, with the addition of wildflowers, birds and pollinators, and sheep!

Thank you, Isabella, for sharing your talents with us!

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