Poetry Arrived In Search Of Me
Y fue a esa edad...Llego la poesia a buscarme. -Pablo Neruda

Night Music

Friday, December 02, 2005
Love Songs in Age

She kept her songs, they kept so little space,
The covers pleased her:
One bleached from lying in a sunny place,
One marked in circles by a vase of water,
One mended, when a tidy fit had seized her,

And coloured, by her daughter -
So they had waited, till, in widowhood
She found them, looking for something else, and stood

Relearning how each frank submissive chord
Had ushered in
Word after sprawling hyphenated word,
And the unfailing sense of being young
Spread out like a spring-woken tree, wherein
That hidden freshness sung,
That certainty of time laid up in store
As when she played them first. But, even more,

The glare of that much-mentionned brilliance, love,
Broke out, to show
Its bright incipience sailing above,
Still promising to solve, and satisfy,
And set unchangeably in order. So
To pile them back, to cry,
Was hard, without lamely admitting how
It had not done so then, and could not now.

-Philip Larkin

I will never be the hipster music snob that I so aspired to be in high school. I will never be the one you go to for the newest, indie-est bands and sounds. I will never be the one who the cool music store guys nod conspiratorially at, knowing that you two belong to a secret society that others can only gawk and wonder at. I, unlike all of those kids, would always eschew Radiohead for REM, will wax nostalgic at Indigo Girls songs, and have to hide my mopey emo albums when friends come by.

After many years of wrestling with my musical taste shortcomings, I have finally come to terms with the fact that I am an emotional ninny when it comes to music. It's almost as if means too much to me to care about the musical competency of whoever is behind it. The combination of a unique voice and a poetic turn of phrase will get me every time.

I am such a boy about most things in life; only my closest friends know when something has upset me, and sometimes I don't even confide in them. Yet something about The Magnetic Fields' "The Book of Love" brings tears to my eyes up every time I hear it. I will also spend hours listening to one song over and over like a love-sick twelve year old, and it's usually something that I've already loved for years. My reaction to music is completely visceral and one of the only facets in my life where I don't feel I have to edit my emotions. Anything that has the power to make me foget to intellectualize every feeling is powerful stuff indeed.

Philip Larkin has been one of my favorite poets for years now, and when I found this, it blew me away. It
s one of those small miracles that we read poetry for. I would love to go into all the subtleties that he offers up, or how I think music and love are really two sides of the same coin, but that's boring and not nearly as nice as reading this poem over a fifth time. By the way, one of my favorite phrases of all time, "stubbly with goodness" comes from Mr. Larkin. Yay for him, and yay for Damien Rice's "Cold Water" which has been playing on repeat for longer than is humanly possible.
11:45 PM :: ::
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