Found this by perusing Crooked Timber. Had never heard of them and now wonder why. They are funny, talented, don’t take themselves seriously at all, and their eccentricity seems well earned. Simply put, they make us smile . . .
So, without further ado, I present The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain!!!
The following is their finale, and it includes a remarkable composition based upon a piece by Handel, resulting in a surprising synchronicity of modern tunes following a classical frame.
For more information about this strange and funny band, visit their homepage:
Back to back films, biopics of great writers. Thinking about the trade offs. First, Sylvia Plath and then Leo Tolstoy. Marked contrast between the two on so many levels. Most obviously, Tolstoy lived a long life, dying at the ripe old age of 82, while Sylvia Plath took her own life at the age of 30:
Dying Is an art, like everything else. I do it exceptionally well.
Both movies portray the struggle, the conflict of life against art and art against life, of sacrificing loved ones for that craft and for genius. But in Sylvia, the betrayal runs too deep. There is no reconciliation, no final, moving, powerful reunion, as there is with The Last Station.
It may well be that to know a poet’s biography intrudes upon the poem, especially if a poet’s life was stormy, filled with drama, childhood traumas, and her life seems to ripple out to impact … Click to continue . . .
Nothing was as it seemed, when Van Gogh painted it. Roiling underneath the subject, flying above it, surrounding it, were his passions, his intensity, his flights into realms most of us could only guess at, if we can match him for moral imagination, or imagination period. With Van Gogh, a rose was not a rose was not a rose.
Ray Succre writes poetry along these same lines, or conjunctions, or coincidences, with a mask or two thrown in for good measure. Surreal, meant to be heard, meant to be spoken, they sing the uncanny.
In honor of Bloomsday, I wanted to point you in the direction of a fine little essay about the people, real people, and their descendants, who found their way into Joyce’s Ulysses. It’s by Bridget Hourican for the Irish Times. Click on the title for the … Click to continue . . .
When the flowers first escaped the row,
having scattered their generatives in time with a good wind,
I used poison to contain them.
All gardeners know you can only own beautiful things
if you keep them in a square.
These were hearty poison-eating flowers, I discovered.
Soon, they made the grounds, even rooting in the concrete walk.
Hurrah for wildness, hurray for its life, I thought,
leaving them be.
I remember too clearly the morning I witnessed
the first flower to get inside the house.
It was growing from the kitchen floor.
I contained this pretty creature by setting a large soup-pot over it.
By next afternoon, the flower had called a compatriot,
and the pot had been overturned.