Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafesj

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


Lyr Req: The Burning Babe (Robert Southwell, S.J.)

Ian HP 28 Jul 99 - 06:01 PM
katlaughing 28 Jul 99 - 09:41 PM
Murray on Saltspring 29 Jul 99 - 03:01 AM
Art Thieme 29 Jul 99 - 01:03 PM
Wolfgang 29 Jul 99 - 01:19 PM
Bert 29 Jul 99 - 02:30 PM
bseed(charleskratz) 29 Jul 99 - 02:38 PM
Wolfgang 29 Jul 99 - 02:51 PM
Ian HP 29 Jul 99 - 07:40 PM
catspaw49 29 Jul 99 - 08:02 PM
Murray on Saltspring 30 Jul 99 - 02:44 AM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum Child
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:





Subject: Burning Babe
From: Ian HP
Date: 28 Jul 99 - 06:01 PM

I recently heard an extraordinary song called The Burning Babe. Spooky and wonderful. Does anyone know anything about it, can give words, reference to a performance of it on an album, please?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Burning Babe
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Jul 99 - 09:41 PM

Ian HP: do you know any of the words? Can you give us anymore clues? Who did you hear singing it or where? Any words at all will help.

katlaughing


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Burning Babe
From: Murray on Saltspring
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 03:01 AM

This sounds like a mystical/religious poem by one of those types--Crashaw, maybe, or someone like that. Try the Oxford Book of Mystical Verse or such.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Burning Babe
From: Art Thieme
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 01:03 PM

It's probably in __THE GOLDEN BOOK OF MURDER BALLADS__. ;-) **BIG SMILE**

Art


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: THE BURNING BABE (Robert Southwell, S.J.)
From: Wolfgang
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 01:19 PM

is it this gem? I copied it from http://www.spirituality.org/issue41/pg09.html

Wolfgang

THE BURNING BABE

This poem was written by Father Robert Southwell, S.J., in 1594
while awaiting execution in the Tower of London.

As I in hoary Winter's night
Stood shivering in the snow,
Surprised I was with sudden heat,
Which made my heart to glow;

And lifting up a fearful eye,
To view what fire was near,
A pretty Babe all burning bright
Did in the air appear;

Who, scorched with excessive heart,
Such floods of tears did shed,
As though his floods should quench his flames,
With which his tears were fed;

Alas (quoth he) but newly born,
In fiery heats I fry,
Yet none approach to warm their hearts,
Or feel my fire, but I;

My faultless breast the furnace is,
The fuel, wounding thorns:
Love is the fire, and sighs the smoke,
The ashes, shame and scorn;

The fuel Justice layeth on,
And Mercy blows the coals,
The metal in this furnace wrought
Are men's defiled souls

For which, as now on fire I am
To work them to their good,
So will I melt into a bath,
To wash them in my blood.

With this he vanished out of sight,
And swiftly shrunk away,
And straight I called unto mind,
That it was Christmas Day.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Burning Babe
From: Bert
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 02:30 PM

Mmmm, I was thinking that this was going to be about The Ludlow Massacre


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Burning Babe
From: bseed(charleskratz)
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 02:38 PM

Wolfgang, great. You beat Joe again (did you leave day off the last line? It fits the rhyme scheme). (I just followed your link, and see that you didn't, but the site may have). It's interesting that the good father's executioners should have let the poem survive--or maybe he managed to pass it to one of his fellow prisoners, or a sympathetic guard. He would, judging from the time, be one of the priests killed by the protestants who came to power with Elizabeth I. Before her ascension, it was the other way around--all in the name of God, of course. --seed


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Burning Babe
From: Wolfgang
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 02:51 PM

Hawkeye BSeed, yes, the "day" has been left off in the last line, I just checked on the online Oxford Book of English verse.
Since Southwell has spent three years in prison before being hanged and quartered he had ample time to pass the poem. First publication was in 1602, seven years after his death.

Wolfgang


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Burning Babe
From: Ian HP
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 07:40 PM

Wolfgang, you are WONDERFUL - it IS those words. At least, it is certainly largely those - it may be exactly those words - since those stunning memorable phrases leap out at me again. Since this was a poem then the tune I heard must have been fitted after the event. It was credited to me as trad.. It is great to know something of the background - it makes the whole thing make much more sense. Thanks again.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Burning Babe
From: catspaw49
Date: 29 Jul 99 - 08:02 PM

Are you sure the last line might not possibly be:

"DAMN! That Peyote was A-OK!!!"

Spaw


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Burning Babe
From: Murray on Saltspring
Date: 30 Jul 99 - 02:44 AM

Hang it--I was all set to pass on this wonderful poem, but you beat me to it. Anyway, I got it in the first ed. of the Norton Anthology of English Literature. I've found that the poor Jesuit missionary was betrayed to the authorities in 1592, tortured and thrown into the Tower of London, and finally hanged and quartered at Tyburn for high treason. He was beatified in 1929. Ben Jonson remarked to the Scots poet William Drummond of Hawthornden that if he had written "The Burning Babe" he would have been willing to destroy many of his own poems. And it is a great piece, full of resonances, whatever the sect. BTW, "scorched", "defiled", and "called" pronounce all their syllables (as the rhythm will tell you). "Fry" in line 14 is a bit strange, I suppose, but it really just means "burn". ,


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 28 January 7:44 AM EST

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 2022 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.