It's new year's eve and I'm watching a Mahler concert on TV. They're taking their last opportunity to mark the centenary of his death. I'm loth to take my eyes from the screen, where the English subtitles make it possible to understand the Bavarian lyrics for once.
Who would have thought so much gloom and death could be so beautiful? When I was a third of my current age and I heard it for the first time, I was stoned and tried to dance to it.
Listening last week to a Mahler radio concert, I heard the (Australian) announcer's mispronounciation of Kindertotenlieder. He changed "songs on the death of children" to "songs on the cakes of children", much more seasonally appropriate. It's actually quite common for the Aussie slapdash approach to yield random new meanings, which can add to the richness of language. But is it art when it's purely accidental?