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Strange songs

Schubert wrote this strange song
about a dwarf in a boat
with a queen, who did him wrong
The dwarf murders her and mystically drifts
alone and along in death on the sea

That’s the kind of song you
want to hear sung, if at all, in German
without a translation, by a great
lieder singer and pianist
as you absently hum along

Here’s another strange song: How come every time
that sweet flirt speaks, the only thing a man
hears is “fuck me, please fuck me, please?”
It’s so habitual I don’t even think
she knows she’s doing it

But when the sad country singer sings
of “my aching dogs” please note
he means his feet and not his pets
“If she wasn’t hurt she wouldn’t be with me
through obstinacy and sheer otherness”

My mom used to drink this green liquor
from Japan that tasted kind of like melons
but that was just a fad
She and her fellow academics preferred
Tanqueray gin or bland Canadian whiskey

But it seems to me now that they’d gather
and sing of a truth more true than the literal
They’d talk some trash for sure
or debate obscure 19th century philosophies
or sing together that melancholy song:

“Joy came to me like love,
like light, your heart to mine
What happens to love
when we die?”
Hey, I know that song

I heard it once or twice
in better days,
when I was young
It has another verse
Can I remember it? Sometimes, yes:

“Although sorrow comes,
comes to me now—
come to me now, my love
It’s true our love because for sure
I’ll be with you once again”

 

 

 

-January 31, 2015-