Sunday, 28 February 2010

Sunday night is... Mae West and Easy Rider and Anthony Julius

From She Done Him Wrong, Mae West and Cary Grant (looking a bit like Al Bowlly) in 1932 or so. A nice ten minute clip. She does a slightly watered-down Bessie Smith in the song, but I still like it. Her easy rider done left her.

Grant clearly reckons she's redeemable.

That's not a redeemable woman. At least she doesn't walk like one.


Read at the Jewish Book Week this morning with Bernad Kops and Micheline Wandor. Very nice. I wondered whether they'd want me to read exclusively Jewish material. I thought about it but then thought I wouldn't, not exclusively anyway. I mean it might make sense when invited to read poems to the Tottenham Hotspur Supporters Club to perform poems solely about Tottenham Hotspur, but generally I try to write about Burnley and Stoke and Bolton Wanderers too. So I read them a brief twenty minutes about the lower half of the league and hoped they'd recognise it as, at least, Premiership material.

Reading Anthony Julius on Eliot's anti-Semitism on the way down from York and generally ('never read anything less than ten years old' is a fine motto). It's perceptive, deeply read and very well argued, but I keep wanting to say, "On the other hand..." and "Yes, but..." And I wonder, for a while, why it is I keep wanting to qualify what Julius is saying. Then I think it may be that while I will read Julius's book once and profit from it, I will go back to The Waste Land time and again, for the rest of my life.

Which is not an argument, only a fact.

And that reminds me of my one and only Ezra Pound clerihew that goes:

Ezra Pound
Was seldom to be found,
For reasons too complicated to explain,
On the terraces at White Hart Lane.

Dad was a solid Spurs man.


Nicole S said...

That Mae West certainly has a wicked swagger. I've at last remembered who it reminds me of: John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever. So confident and unfeminine. Thanks for a great clip.

Ms Baroque said...

George, I've had a crap day - well, evening - stress and problems and worry and a broken iphone with concomitant lost data, and broken sentimental wineglasses and so on and so on. I came here looking for a particular brand of civilised thoughtfulness and interest, a pleasant intelligent voice to try and end the day with. And I found it. Thanks - I knew I could rely on you!

I'd have been very interested to hear Anthony Julius the other day. I heard him on the radio. That new book is very big, isn't it?