Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Yeats, Verily

Dear Sir -

Here is my offering, as you requested. It might come as some source of disappointment to learn the which of my favorite, as one could deem it too easy, obvious or girleen.* If memory serves, someone of your disposition might rather prefer, say, a maritime theme, as in The Shadowy Depths.

I am fond of A Prayer for My Daughter, though some of the latter might give cause to those who insist on William Butler's "woman problem," and old Thomas Stearns Eliot's an anti-Semite, and "In the room the women come and go/Talking of Michelangelo," the homosexual. And what of it? Is an artist's merit in the life or the work? Neither, as they aren't really separable, and surely attitude and bias inform philosophy, which is present in art. So that must be attended to by a scrupulous reader. But as we discover beauty within the imperfect environment that is its setting, we must remember contrasts that offset and augment. We must remember that it is the very nature of the fragile human, and call it even more beautiful still.

Additionally, I care for The Stolen Child, among others. But truly, my simple favorite is what follows on this page and in the nature of my fool's heart. Just you be glad I didn't choose, When You Are Old.

Aedh Wishes For The Clothes Of Heaven**

Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

-W.B. Yeats

I love it for the sentiment, for the love of the feeling world over the material one. I love the rhyming of the word with the same word, which seems like the self meeting the self through the other self, which is so much like falling in and making love. I love the hypnotic induction brought on by the meter, the aforementioned rhyme scheme, and the repetition of words, interspersed and creating internal rhyme and all the more hypnosis which, is so much like falling in and making love.


*(I am shocked not to find this word in the dictionary, though I learned it some time ago, I am quite convinced, from within the pages of the famed synesthete's,(Nabokov), sin, his soul, Lolita. I think it's simply Irish for "girlish.")
** (This poem is alternately called, "He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven." If someone can give me an accurate and relevant meaning of Aedh, I would appreciate it.)

9 comments:

whosyourhuckleberry said...

Yes, lets not get all tangled up in any 'women problems' if we can possibly avoid it.
Good pick by the way, though do I sense a mild whiff of melancholic angst?
Could just be the flu...

kissyface said...

if only.

The Frito Pundito said...

If you google "Aedh" you find that someone posted just that question on a bulletin board and got the following reply (uncorrected) "Aedh was a celtic god of death one of the children of Lir Yeats seems to have use his character in some of his stories along with Ahearne and Michael Robartes and describes him as fire reflected in water. "

As for the poem, c'mon! Yeats rhymes "cloth" with "cloth", "light" with "light", "dreams" with "dreams" and "feet" with "feet". You have to try a little harder than that, W.B.!

Let's fix it

Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark sloths
Of night and light and the half tight,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your Neet;
Tread softly because you tread on my memes.

MUCH better!

You saw of course that your true love in life, Bobby Z., has a new album out that is supposedly his best since [fill in fave Dylan album], an much better than his last one which at that point was his best since [fill in fave Dylan album].

The Frito Pundito said...

P.S. Whatever lyrical genius Toto may have had was swamped by that screeching singing and the horrible arena rock arrangements.

kissyface said...

Frito -

let's work in reverse here, shall we?

I was, of course, employing irony when I deemed Toto's work, "lyrical genius." I don't even really get what they are trying to say, so beautifully(?).

Just yesterday I saw the video (starring Scarlett Johannsen(sp?)), for Bobby D's new album, and read that critics are raving. We'll see, won't we? Funny though, as I was driving home last night after work and listening to Blood on the Tracks wondering if I could get pulled over for crying in my car, I thought that probably Bob Dylan is the only person who might sort of understand me. That of course is an inane thought on many many levels. Still, much as I love him and jest about marrying him, he is not the love of my life.

And don't you c'mon me about WB rhyming words with themselves - I already pointed that out and explained why I like it.

I googled "Aedh" and got the same message board, but didn't persist long enough in the comments to get to that answer. Thank you.

Are you getting my emails, brother?

Anonymous said...

There is a very nice musical arrangement of "The Stolen Child" by Loreena McKennit. Oh, yes, she also does "The Two Trees". She is one of my favorites. steve

Anonymous said...

oh, yeah "mine've been like Verlaine's and Rimbaud"- what an Album! About 15 years ago the 18 year old daughter of a friend of mine discovered this album. She asked me if you ever get over "Blood on the Tracks". I just grinned and shook my head. Nope.

kissyface said...

Steve - I love Loreena.

Anon #2 - Simple Twist of Fate (...Hunts her down by the waterfront docks where the sailors all come in./Maybe she'll pick him out again, how long must he wait/Once more for a simple twist of fate./People tell me it's a sin/To know and feel too much within./
I still believe she was my twin, but I lost the ring./
She was born in spring, but I was born too late/
Blame it on a simple twist of fate.")
and You're a Big Girl Now (Bird on the horizon, sittin' on a fence,
He's singin' his song for me at his own expense.
And I'm just like that bird, oh, oh,
Singin' just for you.
I hope that you can hear,
Hear me singin' through these tears.)are my favorites from that album. They break my heart every time I hear them. But all the songs are great on that album, although I confess to getting annoyed by Tangled Up in Blue sometimes.

Anonymous said...

Oh this is great! I have thought and sung for 30+ years "Your'e a Big Girl Now" wrongly! I never heard the line "at his own expense"; Instead I thought Dylan had repeated (in keeping with his wry humor) where the f'n bird was by "an' he's on the fence". I stand corrected! So much to learn..steve aka Anon#2