I Love Words

8 03 2009

I enjoy Shakespeare, the Psalms, poetry, Alexandre Dumas and many others with a pleasure that stretches right down to my fingertips. Especially when read aloud.

Now, I have to say right out that my enjoyment of specifically Shakespeare is not intellectual. I take no snobbish pleasure out of carrying around Hamlet or Much Ado About Nothing. In fact you will rarely see me with a copy of any of Shakespeare’s works. It’s not about being “smart enough” to understand something that scares so many people. Half the time I don’t  understand! I just like the way the words sound. Besides, Shakespeare wasn’t meant to be read but watched! Of course no-one likes reading Shakespeare in school (even I didn’t). What an odious thing to force children to do! If you want them to appreciate the Bard you stick their fannies on a bus and take them to see one of the comedic plays.

Point being, I just bought a movie called “Cyrano de Bergerac”. It’s actually a taped version of the Broadway production starring Kevin Kline and Jennifer Garner. I admit that most people probably wouldn’t like this particular movie. Few would buy it. I’m looking forward to recieving it like a kid looks forward to his first two wheel bike! The plot is pretty basic: Man #1 and Man #2 are in love with The Girl. The Girl likes Man #2 but Man #2 is dumb (“I want them to love me comely and stupid or not at all!). Man #1 feeds Man#2 lines in order to win The Girl. I won’t tell you the end but it made me cry a little. THE LANGUAGE IS INCREDIBLE! The quotes on my quote page are from that show.

I’m realizing as I write this that a lot of my enoyment of language is directly tied to theatre. Maybe that’s because I love theatre… Or maybe it’s because the written word sounds so much better when presented in the medium of a human voice.

Hmmm.

Allow me to present you with some great language.

She walks in Beauty, like the night
of cloudless climes and starry skies,
And all that’s best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes;
Thus mellowed to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.
                                -“She Walks in Beauty”, Lord Byron

“You have a February face, so full of frost, of storm and cloudiness.” 
                                                     –Much Ado About Nothing, Shakespeare

My wit is more polished than your mustache. The truth which I speak strikes more sparks from men’s hearts than your spurs do from the cobblestones.”
– Edmond Rostand, Cyrano de Bergerac, Act 1

“. . . she better liked to see him free and happy, even than to have him near her, because she loved him better than herself.” – Charles Dickens

“Heaven knows we need never be ashamed of our tears, for they are rain upon the blinding dust of earth, overlying our hard hearts.” – Great Expectations, Charles Dickens

‘Tis strange what a man may do, and a woman yet think him an angel.” – The History of Henry Esmond, William Makepeace Thackery

I mean COME ON! How can you not love this stuff?

And those are my feelings for today.

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2 responses

9 03 2009
Jennifer James

tell the nice people what happened.

11 03 2009
Jenny

COMPLETELY FREAKING OUT!!!! I did a report on Lord Byron in HS, as I loved his poetic verse more than any other poet… its so elegant and romantic and the poem that you wrote is one of my favorites of all time. And by far Much Ado is my favorite. I will watch Cyrano de Bergerac willingly upon your request.

And what is funny is that before I even understood the significance of the Word of God, I would only read the Psalms from the Old King James Version… loved it and still do – I just gleen more now.

Oh how I appreciate you!! 🙂

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