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Raphaela Willington, literary executor and musical collaborator are based in Danbury CT at Western Connecticut State University
Author of Elegy, published posthumously, edited by John Briggs, Literary Executor (there are several cycles of a musical composition inspired by these poems, the first of which has been completed; music is composed by Eric Lewis, renowned violinist and member of Prometheus and the Manhattan String Quartet)
Raphaela Willington died on January 6, 2004, of ovarian cancer. Death became her muse in her last years. It wasn’t only her own cancer. Two years after her grim prognosis and after suffering through many months of an aggressive experimental chemotherapy that made her feel that she was near death or “worse than death,” her parents were killed in an horrific car crash. Death is never far from most artists’ minds, which means that being is also never far.
Raphaela left behind more than 300 carefully crafted poems and unnumbered drawings.
At the end of a life what remains? In fact, nothing remains, of course. Time eventually dissolves everything. Raphaela’s poems present the strangely joyous flavors of that brooding nothingness that makes our life so full. Her bio as she wrote it: “Raphaela Willington lived, worked, and wrote in New York City and Westchester County, New York. She was fond of gardening in her later years.”
Raphaela’s work is edited by her literary executor, Dr. John Briggs. Her poems have been experienced by more people since her death than during her life.
They have inspired Eric Lewis to compose 6 cycles of music, the first of which, Wren Song, is complete and awaiting a world premiere performance.