I’m planning a technical how-to about writing lyrics so I’ve been doing some background research. During meals I’ve been swotting up on my villanelles and my anadiplosis and my recurrence from a copy of Jeffrey Wainwright‘s Poetry: The Basics that I picked up at the library. It’s informative and an excellent read.
At the start of one of the chapters he quotes Private Eye magazine’s spoof teenage poet E. J. Thribb’s Lines On The Return To Britain Of Billy Graham:
My view is
Far too complicated
To explain in a
That’s not just funny; it’s rather good.
And I’d never seen it before, but George is almost certainly familiar with Edwin Morgan‘s Siesta Of A Hungarian Snake:
s sz sz SZ sz SZ sz ZS zs ZS zs zs z
Indeed he is, Damian. He can even pronounce it!
Thribb, by the way, is a much underrated poet, if a little formulaic at times.
Lyrics as in Lorenz Hart? Cole Porter? Lionel Bart? Randy Newman? Bob Dylan? The Streets?
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All of them?! At once?! (“A handbag!!?”)
Anadiplosis is dangerous stuff if you don’t handle it properly.
I think an amalgam of Porter and Dylan would make a good kick off point.
I like John Cooper Clarke’s Haiku:
“an amalgam of Porter and Dylan”: witnessed five years ago, outside Great St Mary’s, Cambridge – a busker singing, in the style of Dylan, “Miss Otis Regrets”. Go on; try it.
Actually that sounds quite feasible, dearie me. But I’m still looking forward to Bob Dylan sings Irving Berlin.
I love a piano, I love a piano
I love to hear somebody play
Upon a piano, a grand piano
It simply carries me away
I know a fine way to treat a Steinway
I love to run my fingers o’er the keys, the ivories
And with the pedal I love to meddle
When Paderewski comes this way
I’m so delighted if I’m invited
To hear that long haired genius play
So you can keep your fiddle and your bow
Give me a P-I-A-N-O, oh, oh
I love to stop right beside an upright
Or a high toned Baby Grand
etc etc. The boy’s a genius.
Ha! I dipped in here to mention John Cooper Clarke’s haiku, only to find that somebody else already has.
It makes me feel kind of warm inside, as though solipsism must be wrong.