Tell Me Something Good: The power of words

Tell Me Something Good

(WSYR-TV) — Since Inauguration Day, the young poet Amanda Gorman has inspired the world with her words. There was power in lines like, “If we merge mercy with might, and might with right, then love becomes our legacy.”

Her presence reminded many of another poet who helped launch a new beginning, six decades earlier. John F. Kennedy drew inspiration from poet Robert Frost, whose words reverberate even today. One of his most famous poems is “Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening.” 

“Whose woods these are, I think I know.  His house is in the village though. He will not see me stopping here, to watch his woods fill up with snow.”

That poem spoke to Lindsay Wiehl, and now, it’s speaking through her. She’s brought Frost’s words to life in a music video shot in her parents’ woods on Oneida Lake.

“It’s about stopping, just for a moment in your busy life and taking it in, and I think that’s something we’ve all been forced to do more than maybe ever in our whole lives,” says Wiehl. “To just stop and look inward and look outward. It kind of just was the right poem at the right time.”

Lindsey’s been playing the bassoon since fourth grade. She was inspired by her mother, a music teacher. Lindsey earned her doctorate at the start of the pandemic, and since then, Wiehl has been a classroom instructor, a band teacher, a composer, a performer.

With her career just getting started, she can check a lot of boxes. But don’t try to put her into one.  “And I think this ended up being the year that I decided I don’t fit in those boxes. Music perhaps for me does a lot more than just one role and it just has a bigger place in my life than I think I even thought.”

Lindsey sang on the recording, as well as playing bassoon on it and editing the finished video.  Her sister shot the drone footage. And the words are all Robert Frost’s.

“All I know is that poem really did stick with me,” she says. “And this fact that he talked about just being, and how we all have a lot of miles to go still, but that doesn’t mean that we need to go all of those miles right now.”

She named it for the poem’s famous final line. “But I have promises to keep.  And Miles to go before I sleep. And Miles to go before I sleep.”

You can see Lindsey’s video of “Miles to Go” on her website under the “Composer” tab.

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