Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Milan Kundera: Human Goodness

Jorge Luis Borges: Juan López y John Ward

Les tocó en suerte una época extraña. 
El planeta había sido parcelado en distintos países, cada uno provisto de lealtades, de queridas memorias, de un pasado sin duda heroico, de derechos, de agravios, de una mitología peculiar, de próceres de bronce, de aniversarios, de demagogos y de símbolos. Esa división, cara a los cartógrafos, auspiciaba las guerras. 

López había nacido en la ciudad junto al río inmóvil; Ward, en las afueras de la ciudad por la que caminó Father Brown. Había estudiado castellano para leer el Quijote. 
El otro profesaba el amor de Conrad, que le había sido revelado en una aula de la calle Viamonte. 
Hubieran sido amigos, pero se vieron una sola vez cara a cara, en unas islas demasiado famosas, y cada uno de los dos fue Caín, y cada uno, Abel. 

Los enterraron juntos. La nieve y la corrupción los conocen. 
El hecho que refiero pasó en un tiempo que no podemos entender.

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Jethro Tull: A Passion Play

Instrumental part

Instrumental part

The Silver Cord
"Do you still see me even here?"
(The silver cord lies on the ground.)
"And so I'm dead", the young man said - over the hill (not a wish away)
My friends (as one) all stand aligned, although their taxis came too late
There was a rush along the Fulham Road
There was a hush in the Passion Play

Such a sense of glowing in the aftermath ripe with rich attainments
All imagined sad misdeeds in disarray the sore thumb screams aloud
Echoing out of the Passion Play

All the old familiar choruses come crowding in a different key:
Melodies decaying in sweet dissonance
There was a rush along the Fulham Road
Into the Ever-passion Play

And who comes here to wish me well?
A sweetly-scented angel fell
She laid her head upon my disbelief
And bathed me with her ever-smile
And with a howl across the sand
I go escorted by a band of gentlemen in leather bound
NO-ONE (but someone to be found)

Re-Assuring Tune
Instrumental part

Memory Bank
All along the icy wastes there are faces smiling in the gloom
Roll up roll down, Feeling unwound? Step into the viewing room
The cameras were all around. We've got you taped; you're in the play
Here's your I.D. (Ideal for identifying one and all.)
Invest your life in the memory bank; ours the interest and we thank you
The ice-cream lady wets her drawers, to see you in the passion play

Take the prize for instant pleasure
Captain of the cricket team
Public speaking in all weathers
A knighthood from a queen

Best Friends
All of your best friends' telephones never cooled from the heat of your hand
There's a line in a front-page story, 13 horses that also-ran
Climb in your old umbrella
Does it have a nasty tear in the dome?

But the rain only gets in sometimes and the sun never leaves you alone

Critique Oblique
Lover of the black and white it's your first night
The Passion Play, goes all the way, spoils your insight
Tell me how the baby's made, how the lady's laid
Why the old dog howls in sadness

And your little sister's immaculate virginity wings away
On the bony shoulders of a young horse named George
Who stole surreptitiously into her geography revision
(The examining body examined her body.)

Actor of the low-high Q, let's hear your view
Peek at the lines upon your sleeves since your memory won't do
Tell me: how the baby's graded, how the lady's faded
Why the old dogs howl with madness

All of this and some of that's the only way to skin the cat
And now you've lost a skin or two, you're for us and we for you
The dressing room is right behind
We've got you taped, you're in the play
How does it feel to be in the play?
How does it feel to play the play?
How does it feel to be the play?

Man of passion rise again, we won't cross you out:
For we do love you like a son, of that there's no doubt
Tell us: is it you who are here for our good cheer?
Or are we here for the glory, for the story, for the gory satisfaction
Of telling you how absolutely awful you really are?

There was a rush along the Fulham Road
There was a hush in the Passion Play

Forest Dance No.1
Instrumental part

Mendelssohn: Elias (Elijah) - Philippe Herreweghe conducting

Petteri Salomaa - Bass 
Soile Isokoski - Soprano 
Monica Groop - Contralto 
John Mark Ainsley - Tenor 
La Chapelle Royale, Collegium Vocale Gent 
Orchestre des Champs-Élysées 
Philippe Herreweghe - Conductor

Robert Graves: With the Gift of a Ring

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Jethro Tull: Pan Dance

Rupert Brooke: Tiare Tahiti

Mamua, when our laughter ends, 
And hearts and bodies, brown as white, 
Are dust about the doors of friends, 
Or scent ablowing down the night, 
Then, oh! then, the wise agree, 
Comes our immortality. 
Mamua, there waits a land 
Hard for us to understand. 
Out of time, beyond the sun, 
All are one in Paradise, 
You and Pupure are one, 
And Taü, and the ungainly wise. 
There the Eternals are, and there 
The Good, the Lovely, and the True, 
And Types, whose earthly copies were 
The foolish broken things we knew; 
There is the Face, whose ghosts we are; 
The real, the never-setting Star; 
And the Flower, of which we love 
Faint and fading shadows here; 
Never a tear, but only Grief; 
Dance, but not the limbs that move; 
Songs in Song shall disappear; 
Instead of lovers, Love shall be; 
For hearts, Immutability; 
And there, on the Ideal Reef, 
Thunders the Everlasting Sea! 

    And my laughter, and my pain, 
Shall home to the Eternal Brain. 
And all lovely things, they say, 
Meet in Loveliness again; 
Miri’s laugh, Teïpo’s feet, 
And the hands of Matua, 
Stars and sunlight there shall meet 
Coral’s hues and rainbows there, 
And Teüra’s braided hair; 
And with the starred tiare’s white, 
And white birds in the dark ravine, 
And flamboyants ablaze at night, 
And jewels, and evening’s after-green, 
And dawns of pearl and gold and red, 
Mamua, your lovelier head! 
And there’ll no more be one who dreams 
Under the ferns, of crumbling stuff, 
Eyes of illusion, mouth that seems, 
All time-entangled human love. 
And you’ll no longer swing and sway 
Divinely down the scented shade, 
Where feet to Ambulation fade, 
And moons are lost in endless Day. 
How shall we wind these wreaths of ours, 
Where there are neither heads nor flowers? 
Oh, Heaven’s Heaven!—but we’ll be missing 
The palms, and sunlight, and the south; 
And there’s an end, I think, of kissing, 
When our mouths are one with Mouth.... 

    Taü here, Mamua, 
Crown the hair, and come away! 
Hear the calling of the moon, 
And the whispering scents that stray 
About the idle warm lagoon. 
Hasten, hand in human hand, 
Down the dark, the flowered way, 
Along the whiteness of the sand, 
And in the water’s soft caress, 
Wash the mind of foolishness, 
Mamua, until the day. 
Spend the glittering moonlight there 
Pursuing down the soundless deep 
Limbs that gleam and shadowy hair, 
Or floating lazy, half-asleep. 
Dive and double and follow after, 
Snare in flowers, and kiss, and call, 
With lips that fade, and human laughter 
And faces individual, 
Well this side of Paradise! .... 
There’s little comfort in the wise.

Robert Graves: In the Beginning was a Word

Robert Graves: Hercules at Nemea

Jethro Tull: Requiem


Well, I saw a bird today --- flying from a bush and the
wind blew it away.
And the black-eyed mother sun scorched the butterfly
at play --- velvet veined.
I saw it burn.
With a wintry storm-blown sigh, a silver cloud blew
right on by.
And, taking in the morning, I sang --- O Requiem.
Well, my lady told me, ``Stay.''
I looked aside and walked away along the Strand.
But I didn't say a word, as the train time-table blurred
close behind the taxi stand.
Saw her face in the tear-drop black cab window.
Fading in the traffic; watched her go.
And taking in the morning, heard myself singing ---
O Requiem.
Here I go again.
It's the same old story.
Well, I saw a bird today --- I looked aside and walked
away along the Strand.

Jethro Tull: Baker St. Muse

"Baker Street Muse"

[Baker Street Muse]

Windy bus-stop. Click. Shop-window. Heel.
Shady gentleman. Fly-button. Feel.
In the underpass, the blind man stands.
With cold flute hands.
Symphony match-seller, breath out of time.
You can call me on another line.
Indian restaurants that curry my brain.
Newspaper warriors changing the names they advertise from the station stand.
With cold print hands.
Symphony word-player, I'll be your headline.
If you catch me another time.

Didn't make her
with my Baker Street Ruse.
Couldn't shake her
with my Baker Street Bruise.
Like to take her
but I'm just a Baker Street Muse.

Ale-spew, puddle-brew
boys, throw it up clean.
Coke and Bacardi colours them green.
From the typing pool goes the mini-skirted princess with great finesse.
Fertile earth-mother, your burial mound is fifty feet down in the Baker Street underground. (What the hell!)
Walking down the gutter thinking,
"How the hell am I today?"
Well, I didn't really ask you but thanks all the same.

[Pygmy And The Whore]

"Big bottled Fraulein, put your weight on me," said the Pygmy And The Whore,
desperate for more in his assault upon the mountain.
Little man, his youth a fountain.
Overdrafted and still counting.
Vernacular, verbose; an attempt at getting close to where he came from.
In the doorway of the stars, between Blandford Street and Mars;
Proposition, deal. Flying button feel. Testicle testing.
Wallet ever-bulging. Dressed to the left, divulging the wrinkles of his years.
Wedding-bell induced fears.
Shedding bell-end tears in the pocket of her resistance.
International assistance flowing generous and full to his never-ready tool.
Pulls his eyes over her wool.
And he shudders as he comes.
And my rudder slowly turns me into the Marylebone Road.

[Crash-Barrier Waltzer]

And here slip I
dragging one foot in the gutter
in the midnight echo of the shop that sells cheap radios.
And there sits she
no bed, no bread, no butter
on a double yellow line
where she can park anytime.
Old Lady Grey; crash-barrier waltzer
some only son's mother. Baker Street casualty.
Oh, Mr. Policeman
blue shirt ballet master.
Feet in sticking plaster
move the old lady on.
Strange pas-de-deux
his Romeo to her Juliet.
Her sleeping draught, his poisoned regret.
No drunken bums allowed to sleep here in the crowded emptiness.
Oh officer, let me send her to a cheap hotel
I'll pay the bill and make her well - like hell you bloody will!
No do-good over kill. We must teach them to be still more independent.

[Mother England Reverie]

I have no time for Time Magazine or Rolling Stone.
I have no wish for wishing wells or wishing bones.
I have no house in the country I have no motor car.
And if you think I'm joking, then I'm just a one-line joker in a public bar.
And it seems there's no-body left for tennis; and I'm a one-band-man.
And I want no Top Twenty funeral or a hundred grand.
There was a little boy stood on a burning log,
rubbing his hands with glee. He said, "Oh Mother England,
did you light my smile; or did you light this fire under me?
One day I'll be a minstrel in the gallery.
And paint you a picture of the queen.
And if sometimes I sing to a cynical degree
it's just the nonsense that it seems."

So I drift down through the Baker Street valley,
in my steep-sided un-reality.
And when all is said and all is done
I couldn't wish for a better one.
It's a real-life ripe dead certainty
that I'm just a Baker Street Muse.

Talking to the gutter-stinking, winking in the same old way.
I tried to catch my eye but I looked the other way.

Indian restaurants that curry my brain
newspaper warriors changing the names they advertise from the station stand.
Circumcised with cold print hands.

Windy bus-stop. Click. Shop-window. Heel.
Shady gentleman. Fly-button. Feel.
In the underpass, the blind man stands.
With cold flute hands.
Symphony match-seller, breath out of time
you can call me on another line.

Didn't make her
with my Baker Street Ruse.
Couldn't shake her
with my Baker Street Bruise.
Like to take her
but I'm just a Baker Street Muse.

(I can't get out!)