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Lyr Add: Carrickfergus (Louis MacNeice)

Big Al Whittle 17 Oct 15 - 02:25 PM
MGM·Lion 17 Oct 15 - 03:07 PM
Big Al Whittle 17 Oct 15 - 03:21 PM
Big Al Whittle 17 Oct 15 - 03:25 PM
Big Al Whittle 17 Oct 15 - 03:29 PM
MGM·Lion 17 Oct 15 - 03:49 PM
Big Al Whittle 17 Oct 15 - 04:17 PM
Amos 17 Oct 15 - 07:12 PM
Big Al Whittle 17 Oct 15 - 07:44 PM
Rapparee 17 Oct 15 - 10:13 PM
MGM·Lion 18 Oct 15 - 12:28 AM
MGM·Lion 18 Oct 15 - 12:34 AM
MGM·Lion 18 Oct 15 - 04:23 AM
GUEST 18 Oct 15 - 09:49 AM
Big Al Whittle 18 Oct 15 - 10:56 AM
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Subject: Lyr Add: CARRICKFERGUS (Louis MacNeice)
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 17 Oct 15 - 02:25 PM

rapping to MGM about the common market somehow he mentioned the Irish poet, Louis MacBeice. Here is luttle present to all th mudcatters who sing that wonderful song - MacNeice;s poem Carrickfergus

I was born in Belfast between the mountain and the gantries
To the hooting of lost sirens and the clang of trams:
Thence to Smoky Carrick in County Antrim
Where the bottle-neck harbour collects the mud which jams

The little boats beneath the Norman castle,
The pier shining with lumps of crystal salt;
The Scotch Quarter was a line of residential houses
But the Irish Quarter was a slum for the blind and halt.

The brook ran yellow from the factory stinking of chlorine,
The yarn-milled called its funeral cry at noon;
Our lights looked over the Lough to the lights of Bangor
Under the peacock aura of a drowning moon.

The Norman walled this town against the country
To stop his ears to the yelping of his slave
And built a church in the form of a cross but denoting
The List of Christ on the cross, in the angle of the nave.

I was the rector's son, born to the Anglican order,
Banned for ever from the candles of the Irish poor;
The Chichesters knelt in marble at the end of a transept
With ruffs about their necks, their portion sure.

The war came and a huge camp of soldiers
Grew from the ground in sight of our house with long
Dummies hanging from gibbets for bayonet practice
And the sentry's challenge echoing all day long.

I went to school in Dorset, the world of parents
Contracted into a puppet world of sons
Far from the mill girls, the smell of porter, the salt mines
And the soldiers with their guns.
Louis Macneice

enjoy!


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 17 Oct 15 - 03:07 PM

Thank you, Al.

I think my favourite MacNeice poem is the much-anthologised but still admirable "Bagpipe Music".

http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/bagpipe-music/


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 17 Oct 15 - 03:21 PM

http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/bagpipe-music/


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Subject: Lyr Add: BAGPIPE MUSIC (Louis MacNeice)
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 17 Oct 15 - 03:25 PM

and for the lazy
bagpipe music

it's no go the merrygoround, it's no go the rickshaw,
All we want is a limousine and a ticket for the peepshow.
Their knickers are made of crepe-de-chine, their shoes are made of python,
Their halls are lined with tiger rugs and their walls with head of bison.

John MacDonald found a corpse, put it under the sofa,
Waited till it came to life and hit it with a poker,
Sold its eyes for souvenirs, sold its blood for whiskey,
Kept its bones for dumbbells to use when he was fifty.

It's no go the Yogi-man, it's no go Blavatsky,
All we want is a bank balance and a bit of skirt in a taxi.

Annie MacDougall went to milk, caught her foot in the heather,
Woke to hear a dance record playing of Old Vienna.
It's no go your maidenheads, it's no go your culture,
All we want is a Dunlop tire and the devil mend the puncture.

The Laird o' Phelps spent Hogmanay declaring he was sober,
Counted his feet to prove the fact and found he had one foot over.
Mrs. Carmichael had her fifth, looked at the job with repulsion,
Said to the midwife "Take it away; I'm through with overproduction."

It's no go the gossip column, it's no go the Ceilidh,
All we want is a mother's help and a sugar-stick for the baby.

Willie Murray cut his thumb, couldn't count the damage,
Took the hide of an Ayrshire cow and used it for a bandage.
His brother caught three hundred cran when the seas were lavish,
Threw the bleeders back in the sea and went upon the parish.

It's no go the Herring Board, it's no go the Bible,
All we want is a packet of fags when our hands are idle.

It's no go the picture palace, it's no go the stadium,
It's no go the country cot with a pot of pink geraniums,
It's no go the Government grants, it's no go the elections,
Sit on your arse for fifty years and hang your hat on a pension.

It's no go my honey love, it's no go my poppet;
Work your hands from day to day, the winds will blow the profit.
The glass is falling hour by hour, the glass will fall forever,
But if you break the bloody glass you won't hold up the weather.
Louis Macneice


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 17 Oct 15 - 03:29 PM

i always loved that little thing Alan Bennett did on 1930's poets

'the trubble with MacNeice is that he never made a fool of himself over women, boys or communism....an' yer know if you never go overboard - you don't tend to make much of a splash.


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 17 Oct 15 - 03:49 PM

Alan Bennett, now. Something of a blind spot of mine. I know much admired; but always strikes me as the world's prime purveyor of platitudes. Never actually met him, tho did know two of his just-across-the-road neighbours, Jonathan Miller & Michael Frayn, from university days. We were Camb & Bennett was Ox. But spent much time next door to his house at one time, as my late first wife's publisher, still called Duckworth but by then managed by Colin Haycraft, & his wife Anna who wrote under name Alice Thomas Ellis, lived next door to Bennett's house in Gloucester Terrace. So when a book of my wife's was in the pipeline, we would go there for lunch to discuss the work, & there would be Bennett's derelict van standing in the drive just a few yards along from their front door. Not that we ever saw the Lady in it, mind...

≈M≈


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 17 Oct 15 - 04:17 PM

fascinating - thats the sort of stuff that makes you an ace mudcatter


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: Amos
Date: 17 Oct 15 - 07:12 PM

Macneice said of poetry: " "Poetry in my opinion must be honest before anything else and I refuse to be 'objective' or clear-cut at the cost of honesty." "

I have revered him for this sentiment, whether he lived up to it or not.

A


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 17 Oct 15 - 07:44 PM

well i think the dominant voice of the era was Auden. and Bagpipe music - i think is MacNeice trying to sound like Auden.

i don't remember the ups a downs of it - but i seem to remember Autumn Journal was written in the weeks around a bye election he was fighting or involved in.

that to me was him at his best, very calm but very passionate.

mike would almost certainly be able to tell you how he lived his life.


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: Rapparee
Date: 17 Oct 15 - 10:13 PM

My Father-in-law was stationed in that camp in County Antrim when he first arrived in Europe in 1942. This summer we found out that the rangers/guides at the Giant's Causeway didn't even know any soldiers had been stationed in Antrim.


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 18 Oct 15 - 12:28 AM

Thanks for implied compliment, Al. But in fact I know little of the guy's biog, I just like his verse; better than Auden to my taste, but mileages will natch vary. If I wanted to know about his life, I would look it up in The Continuum Guide To Literature In English, one of whose two co-editors happened to be one Valerie Grosvenor Myer... her last completed work before her death in 2007.

≈M≈

I particularly like this passage, which, as I've recently remarked on another thread, tho ostensibly about the Ancient World, I always feel redolent of my own youth, & suspect MacNeice probably thought it so also of his:

    I think of the slaves.
And how one can imagine oneself among them
     I do not know;
It was all so unimaginably different
     And all so long ago.   
Louis MacNeice · Autumn Journal (1939)


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 18 Oct 15 - 12:34 AM

Hope I may be permitted to remark, for any who might be interested, that there is a Wikipedia entry for my dear late wife Valerie. I didn't post it, tho I have of course edited it for accuracy -- it was done, they told me, by one of their busiest contributors, nobody I know & I don't know what put him on to making this particular contrib.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valerie_Grosvenor_Myer


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 18 Oct 15 - 04:23 AM

To give correct name, which I slightly misremembered above ---

The Continuum Encyclopedia of British Literature.


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: GUEST
Date: 18 Oct 15 - 09:49 AM

I suppose you need to be of a certain vintage to know anything about troops being stationed in N.I. during WWII, or perhaps to have a bit of curiosity about history. I was just five years old
when the troops - mostly Canadian I found out later - were using our hawthorn hedgerows and small rolling hills to simulate the Normandy countryside. The roads were blocked for days
and there were soldiers everywhere, it was the biggest event in my young life for quite a while.


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Subject: RE: Carrickfergus by Louis MacNeice
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 18 Oct 15 - 10:56 AM

in lincolnshire we had lots of American servicemen. we kids loved them, so did our big sisters....


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