A Composer’s Prayers for the Earth, and Humanity, in the Age of Climate Change

By Kiley Bense
Inside Climate News
April 8, 2023

John Luther Adams’ “Vespers of the Blessed Earth” is a musical expression of climate grief and the solace to be found in the “enduring beauty of the earth.”

In the summer of 2021, Americans across the country looked up and noticed strangely brilliant skies. From Colorado to Virginia, the sun glowed like a hot red disc, and social media feeds filled with photos of blazing orange sunsets. I took pictures of pink, hazy dusks in the Northeast, gawking at the spectacle of them. They seemed like a gift from the planet in a time of global tumult. It was only later, scrolling through headlines from the West coast, that I realized their startling colors were caused by smoke from the wildfires then burning in California and Oregon.

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