The Lake Isle of Innisfree by Yeats

Poetry

Here I am reciting a poem by Yeats, on the the beach. The pauses are because I am reciting by heart. I am doing this in response to a creative challenge on the excellent Lateral Action blog… There is a podcast called 21st Century Creative. It is a first series and I really recommend it to anyone who is interested in creativity. You can go back and listen to all the podcasts. The last episode will be next week but there will be another season very soon. There are excellent interviews with many different creative people.

This episode the challenge was to learn a poem by heart. I do this on a regular basis for my own songs but this has reminded me that I wanted to do it for myself. In this way I can explore poetry from the inside. I also help my children learn poetry for their school homework and they love to do it.

I have developed techniques for memorization which include repetition, analysis of structures, rhyming schemes and visualization. It is always impressive to see how quickly my sons learn poems. They are very good at it but they are also good at learning in advance. In fact one of the main parts of memorizing is sleeping. This allows the text to really live inside of you.

I should really redo the poem and maybe I will this evening!

I will post the results here as I learn some of my favourite poems. There is a huge difference when we read poems and when we recite them.

The line “I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore” is pure music to the ear and in the mouth. It becomes clear when we recite it.

My version: filling myself up with music

As I learnt the poem I repeated it like a mantra, letting the music of the words, the images, fill me up. I recited the poem at the end of the day on the beach to my wife. It was a little difficult. I possibly should have learnt a poem in French but my wife speaks pretty good English.

Incidentally it is very interesting to listen to Yeats’ own reading of the poem : it is not at all the way I hear the music of the poem. You can hear his version at the bottom of this post. Yeats was not as fond of this poem as others are. For him it was a work of his youth…

Earlier in the day as I walked through the streets, reciting the poem, it began to resound more and more with me.

As I swam out in the sea in the evening, I imagined the “lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;” as I stood in the city surrounded with people (“While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey, I hear it in the deep heart’s core”) I tried to hear the silence and the calm that is at the heart of this poem. As the evening set (“There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow, And evening full of the linnet’s wings.”) I was looking at the golden cloud in the sky’s blue grey azure, trying to transpose this memory of Yeats’ childhood holidays onto this noisy mediterranean resort.

This wish to go, to leave where we are (“I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,”) fills up the whole poem. I began to hear the poem from inside me.

Reciting this poem on the beach was fun as well, you can hear all the seaside noises…

Here is my recital for what it’s worth.

This will surely lead to some lyrics or words of my own… A personal version of the Lake Isle of Innisfree.

This is also why it is a great idea to learn poems: you then transpose those ideas onto your own material… And Yeats is no slouch when it comes to beautiful words…

Keep creating.

 

Willian Butler Yeats

Here is Yeats’ version:

End of One Thing, Beginning of the Next…

endoftourzarbothEnd of One Thing, Beginning of the Next…

Just arrived home from Zarboth tour. We’ve been touring over the past couple of months, going on the road for three or four days at a time.

Maybe in another post I’ll go into some of the adventures we’ve had, but tonight I am tired. So tired… but happy.

I have a bit of an accent when I speak French so people often ask me where I come from and I usually tell them “Limoges.” This is my idea of a joke and usually no one believes me when I say I am from this French town.

Poetic Justice

Limoges has always seemed to be a rather sleepy provincial town to me. So it was great to have all my preconceived notions blown away by playing the last date of our tour in Limoges. Also lots of people from Limoges helped us with this video.

The concert was great, we played in the El Doggo, for the Festival Pop Sur La Ville- it was great to see friends who had come to see us, some from the earliest parts of the tour.

And in Limoges whenever I said I was from Limoges nobody mentioned my accent. So there! A lot of great friendly people and unfortunately we had to leave quickly… But I can’t wait to go back!

Christmas and Music

Two out of three members of Zarboth hate Christmas so if you have any other members of your family or friends who hate Christmas don’t hesitate to get the album.

Unfortunately we also ran out of CDs and vinyl records when we were on the road.

You can find them all here.

That is the album that I am on of course.

And if Zarboth is not your cup of tea maybe you could try Onze Onze ?

Have a good week! And remember keep on making things!

 

 

One Year On, There’s No Devils at All, it’s Just the System

One Year On, There’s No Devils at All, it’s Just the System

One year on, there’s no devils at all it’s just the system… sad to say or happy in the knowledge that maybe there is nothing to change. Maybe the only thing you can change is yourself. And even that is difficult. The most difficult.

A voice crying out in the darkness or having a laugh to yourself. Take pleasure in small things. Sometimes being that voice can bring the voice to others. It is so small what I do, a couple of lines scribbled in a notebook, I snatch a passing thought, a half mumbled word, half formed ideas.

It’s not big enough I know. It should perhaps be bigger. The universe is a big place. What is hot air on a microphone?

No answer.

No answer.

Lost Song Video

From Zarboth Lost Song video
From Zarboth Lost Song video- click on image to link to video

Here is a video made with help from a lot of people (with the help of the audio visual school Lycée Marise Bastié Formation AVN 87 and the association Toutazimut, of Constance Social Club, of the association Émile a une vache and of Télé Millevaches, and with a lot of help from the village of Faux-la-Montagne (Fake the Mountain in English)). All of the people who helped with this video can be found in the information under the video on youtube.

It was a great experience for all of us and I really enjoyed it. I did the storyboard and you can see some of it below. As a result I found myself in the director’s chair and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Well, actually, enjoyment is not really the correct word.

storyboard page 1photo-2

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was a pretty intense experience, I think they will make a “making of” film but I don’t know if it will be on the web or in the real world… But when you think of all the work for a modest little film… the mind boggles.

End of Tour de France

So Zarboth are going on their final leg of their tour of France on Wednesday.

You can see where they are playing here

If you like this video, please don’t hesitate to share it or email it. We are completely independent, underground artists here. Algorithms are holding us back…

Other news to follow…

I will speak about La France in a later post.

Keep on keeping on.