Utopian Turtletop. Monsieur Croche's Bête Noire. Contact: turtletop [at] hotmail [dot] com

Monday, January 21, 2008

[Finished listening to and writing through the Bach cello suites. Thanks again to Jonathan Mayhew, whose idea it was, and to Maryrose Larkin and Joseph Duemer for taking part as well.

I’m going to be slowing the pace of posting here for the foreseeable future. Mid-life crisis: I still don’t know what kind of blogger I want to be when I grow up. Two goals for this year: More music, and more extended writing. Blogging 4, 5, 6, 7 times a week gets in the way of both goals.

Here’s 28 minutes of Bach.]

[Update, next morning: Fixing typos: "so it has come to his" should have been "so it has come to this"; "collectivation" should have been "collectivization." Also, meant to give a holler to my friend-in-blogging Gary Oxford, whose posting of a song a week has been a pleasure to hear and a kick in the butt to get more music together. Thanks Gary!]

a love story. they met. at first they didn’t hit it off. she got on his nerves, he irritated her. circumstances threw them together, and a crisis showed their true colors to each other. and those colors were love, loyalty, ingenuity, fortitude, and vitality. they lived together ever after, mostly happily, happily enough to deserve the epithet “ever.”

a song of love. a clever run-down of comparisons between the beloved’s qualities and some favorite hobby of the singer’s -- say, cooking. spatula, oven, recipes. find a double entendre, save it for the chorus.

so it has come to this. Wallace Stevens on the tennis court, droll and irritable. stuck out here in the country, nobody wants to talk. Wallace drinks and casts aspersions. I try to engage him on the subject of insurance, he winces. “collectivization of risk, in theory; in practice, the art of withholding delivery of promised assistance; the privatization of collective delusions. there is no insurance.” uh-oh, a touchy subject, I change it. the weather? the provisions of our hosts? harumph and haroomph. on the question of poetic technique he is more forthcoming. “it’s the sound,” he says, “find your sound. the short bursts are jewels, but lately I want the extended un-resolved cadenzas, pages and pages, letting the sound lead you on, until, hopefully, a moment’s epiphany.”

in the merry month
the merry mouth of the month
time’s anatomy
the shank of an hour
the shapely gam of a moment’s notice
yesterday shook a leg, tomorrow beckons with batted eyelids

a dalliance with time
makes you feel
like a million heirs to
the hippest thrones and
time will lead you
and in
the end will
have been worth

so it has come to this it always comes to this because
this is what
it is and this
is what we’re
here for, in-
deed, this is
all there is, that
is, all
that is

this is

oh sweetheart, I know, you
hoped for something
more, that’s under-
standable, I
mean, who
doesn’t sometimes

the sweet lines delineate the aura of this moment’s gesture

and that’s music

ah exquisite
so often my dance card has been mostly empty
but who speaks of dance cards
the dance happens
you dance or not and I regret
not dancing more

it’s not too late, not yet

time asks you to dance
it’s your decision
sometimes the floor is crowded, sometimes it’s empty
but time always wants to dance

merry merry merry merry
emphatic beery merry
oh no, not beery, not me!
yes yes yes, beery me beery!
beery or no, style matters not,
sober or tipsy, or tipsy on time,
tipsy on pattern, tipsy on delineations,
on discriminating indeliberations,
oh of course I don’t want the party to end
but why worry on that until it actually does
the movement the motion the story the merry

the end

Suite No. 6 in D major, 1. Prelude, 2. Allemande, 3. Courante, 4. Sarabande, 5. Gavottes I and II, 6. Gigue.

[Note: As far as I know Wallace Stevens did not hold the beliefs attributed to him above, and I have no idea whether he played tennis.]


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