Showing posts with label love. Show all posts
Showing posts with label love. Show all posts

Friday, May 28, 2010


That's a musical number above, from the film "Bright Star" which was well reviewed when it came out in 2009, but which was afterward completely forgotten. I'll have more to say about the music in a minute.

The film's about my favorite poet of the Romantic Era, John Keats, and his never consummated love for Fanny Brawne. Reviewers liked the film, though some thought it was weak on story and was only saved by the performances. Some lamented that it never touched very seriously on Keats' poetry. They're right on both counts...well, half right...but if you liked films like "Shakespeare in Love," then you have to see it nevertheless.

I like a good love story, not only because I believe in the philosophy that underpins romantic love (discussed in previous posts), but because when these stories are done right they stimulate your thinking about everything else. To be in love is to live in a state of hyper awareness, when even the cracks in the sidewalk seem to have deep meaning. It's nice to be reminded of a time when we were fully alive, no matter how torturous it might have been in some respects.

To get back to the film's music: The top video is from the film and is a vocal adaption of Mozart's Serenade in B Flat, K361.  For comparison, here's (immediately above) an original, instrumental version of the same music. The vocal version stands up pretty well, I think.

In the film Fanny tells Keats that she doesn't like poetry because she can never understand what poems mean. Keats gives a great answer, one which applies to visual art (examples by Van Gogh above) as well as poetry: 

"The point of diving in a lake is not immediately to swim to the shore, but to be in the luxuriate in the sensation of water. You do not 'work the lake out.' It is an experience beyond thought. Poetry soothes and emboldens the soul to accept mystery."

Woooow! Well said! I think of what Keats said when I look at drawings by Van Gogh. No doubt they're about the beauty of the natural world, but they're also about the power of lines and the awesome human mind that can manipulate them so expressively. To borrow from Keats: you luxuriate in the the sensation of the flow of them, and of the dynamic spaces between them. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


You know, it's funny....modern girls all think they're above this sort of thing....but they're not. The models in the picture may look plastic, the writing may come off as insincere or cliched, but the card is effective nevertheless.

People respond to elevated speech, to words that conjure up a romantic ideal. It doesn't matter that people don't talk that way in real life. That's precisely why we like it.

Romance is too important to be spoken about in the same language that we use to buy aspirin.

Johnny Depp (above) demonstrates how to seduce with with words alone.

For the curmudgeons out there, here's (above) some valentine vitriol.