I am busy working on my official Antarctic musical compositions, but they are not ready to share just yet. In the meantime, here's a conceptual piece which I wrote shortly after returning from the Ice. This piece was inspired by the sounds and events of my camping trip on Old Palmer Island (see the Night of the E Seals story here). It's dedicated to Palmer Station and I'm told a copy of the score now hangs in the galley there...
Antarctic Late Night Snack
Begin with one secret island cove, whose name changes several times each year. Line its edges with slowly melting walls of ancient ice 20 to 40 feet high. Roll small crumbs of ice down the walls, jingling sparsely.
Add bergy bits and brash ice to taste and stir gently with an ebbing tide.
Place 2 to 3 small heaps of dozing Southern Elephant Seals (4 - 7 per pile) along the sides and pepper with occasional hurrumphs, sputters, snores and sighs.
For the main course throw 8 to 10 additional Elephant Seals into the water in the center of the cove and frolic freely. Periodic breathing and splashing should punctuate the night. Be sure to include a healthy dose of loud, otherworldly calls, echoing both above and below the water.
Savor up close for several hours until well after midnight. When you can no longer feel your toes retire to a cozy tent. (Be careful to avoid frostbite.) Sip hot tea nestled in a warm sleeping bag and enjoy the lingering echoes until dawn.
Cheryl E. Leonard 2/19/09
for Palmer Station
(Copyright 2009 Great Hoary Marmot Music. All Rights Reserved.)