Tag Archives: poetry

Are Lyricists Poets?


This week on Facebook: Perhaps two of the thing that have stuck in my mind associated with music was listening to an aficionado who was in raptures about the tune ‘Begin the Beguine’ and someone writing about lyrics, especially opera, being transposed into english. I don’t remember the sources of either, but the aficionado thought that Begin the Beguine was the only complete story line reflected in the lyrics of a tune and the other writing that words set to music in a foreign language needed great care to be taken when translating the lyrics into english. The latter sentiments intimated in an article written on operavore:

It struck me that opera in English is particular, and often challenging, because our vowels are not always beautiful and unfriendly consonants tend to intrude. The Problem with Opera in English

I can’t answer the question, ‘Are Lyricists Poets?’ with so much obvious disagreement. Latouche and Sondheim clearly disagree but perhaps the question is a lot more complex than it first appears — Latouche may have thought the term lyricist to be somewhat demeaning.

His friend the novelist and composer Paul Bowles recalled that Latouche “made his living writing song lyrics, although he called himself a poet, and bitterly resented my calling him a lyricist.” Words and Shadows

Lyrics, even poetic ones, are not poems. Poems are written to be read, silently or aloud, not sung. Stephen Sondheim

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Aasof on Poetry


This week on Facebook: The final selection is an article on the subject of poetry, if not entirely bringing an end to my respite from matters economic and political, at least giving myself a break from them during the August holiday month. The subject of literature is very much influenced by personal tastes, which is reflected in my choice of poems here.

Last week’s post on essays was probably the one area where the subjects of English Literature and English Grammar overlapped when I was at school. Teachers bent on finding a budding essayists or perhaps a poet, expected us all to wax lyrical over all things. Yet, perhaps, the agony of reading terrible essays in English Grammar was nothing compared to the gauche attempts at poetry made in English Literature. I suspect that it was poetry that caused the unwilling writer and the unfortunate reader the most distress. Read more of this post

Philip Larkin meets the moderators.


The defunct My Telegraph site would arbitrarily imposes automated censorship by deleting expletives, which seems like a neat solution but it completely disregards the context. I was recently unable to call King Charles II ‘a bastard’, an expletive that I had cause to believe was an apt description of his vindictive pursuit of the ‘regicides’. By way of a response to this – unwarranted – moderation I posted Everything in moderation? which was replete with ‘bastards’. While the gratuitous use of obscenities is forbidden by The Telegaph, the presumption being that profanities are forbidden, gratuitousness is dependent on context.

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A Private trip to a limerick


Very occasional I buy a copy of Private Eye, more often than not attracted by an amusing front cover, perhaps I should subscribe to it. Ahem; The Telegraph might have forced me to subscribe to it if it had made membership of its now defunct Blog Site (My Telegraph) conditional on doing so.  Read more of this post

Casabianca


The boy stood on the burning deck
Whence all but he had fled;
The flame that lit the battle’s wreck
Shone round him o’er the dead. Read more of this post

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Martin Widlake's Yet Another Oracle Blog

Oracle performance, Oracle statistics and VLDBs

The Land Is Ours

a Landrights campaign for Britain

The Bulletin

This site was created for members and friends of My Telegraph blog site, but anyone is welcome to comment, and thereafter apply to become an author.

TCWG Short Stories

Join our monthly competition and share story ideas...

The Real Economy

Blogs and stuff from Ed Conway

Public Law for Everyone

Professor Mark Elliott

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