“When they arrived at the City of Music, they found silence. Even the birds nesting in the open ruins refused to sing. But that was long ago. Now the buildings glowed with color, each window lit brightly at night by flickering, dancing candle light. Now you could walk the pathways that lined canals and hear the music tumble out from windows opened wide, down to the street below. Some played fiddle, and reeling jigs, and you could walk through the city, from tune to tune and never a note would jar. And there were still corners of the busy streets where silence could be found. But now it was the beautiful silence of peace, the silence that waits between the songs. The silence where creativity blooms.”
From Jackie Morris, The Quiet Music of Gently Falling Snow, Graffeg Ltd, UK, 2016.
Jackie Morris (b. 1961)is a British author and illustrator. She has done illustrations for magazines like Radio Times, New Statesman, New Society and Country Living. In 2005 her illustrated book The Seal Children won the Tir Na N-Og Award and in 2016 she was shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal for Something About a Bear, which she later won in 2019 for her illustration of The Lost Words, a book of poetry by Robert Macfarlane. The Quiet Music of Gently Falling Snow (2020) is a collection of twelve illustrated folk tales, or lullabies for grown-ups, set in a a dreamlike world of music, snow and magic. The stories are based on a series of musically-themed illustrations first created by Jackie for ‘Help Musicians UK’, some of which are featured below.
Selected illustrations by Jackie Morris
From “Flight of Fancy”, a series of Christmas cards commissioned by Help Musicians UK, an independent charity supporting musicians of all genres