Saturday, February 27, 2010

"My Ship"

couple of weeks ago the poet Garrett Hongo commented on Facebook that he was listening to "Miles Ahead + 19" and that his favorite song was "My Ship" by Gershwin/Kurt Weill.

Some of the lyrics go like this:

"My ship has sails that are made of silk / The decks are trimmed with gold / And of jam and spice / There's a paradise in the hold // My ship's aglow with a million pearls / And rubies fill each bin / The sun sits high in a sapphire sky / When my ship comes in..." (I like that the paradise in the hold consists of jam and spice!)

I love the song and loved that he was writing about it (although actually, I don't think he was was focusing on the lyrics but on Miles' instrumental version). I had to comment:

"Heard that around the house a lot growing up plus my Mom's out-of-tune a cappella singing of it. Hence had to learn it once I became a singer.

"I felt it was really about singing (= lyric = poetry)!

'I do not care if that day arrives / That dream need never be / If the ship I sing / Doesn't also bring...'

I don't think it's just a scanning problem that led to not saying 'the ship I sing OF' but instead 'the ship I sing'  I prefer to think that one is really singing that ship into being."

Despite her utter untunefulness, my Mom sang its first couple of lines with heart and just the right mix of fervor and wistfulness  and then stopped, implying the rest with her bright-eyed expression.

Gotta remember to sing that ship into being  the only way it's going to get here.


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Thanks for adding your voice!