Friday, August 31, 2012

Blue Moon, Blue Heart

The Second Full Moon of August

I like the way this month began with the Lughnasa Moon and will end tonight with a blue moon. The last month to have two full moons was December 2009 (click links for previous related blog posts); the next will be July 2015. Today, no doubt, a lot of people will be humming their favorite version of that old romantic ballad "Blue Moon":

"Blue Moon
You saw me standing alone
Without a dream in my heart
Without a love of my own
Blue Moon . . . "

Some friends have expressed a preference for the upbeat version sung by Sha - Na - Na in the musical Grease, while others prefer the mellow rendition performed by Cowboy Junkies.

But there's a different song running through my mind today.
For me, it's . . .

Blue Kentucky Girl
words & lyrics by Johnny Mullins
sung by Emmylou Harris








You left me for the bright lights of the town
A country boy set out to see the world
Remember when those neon lights shine down
That big old moon shines on your Kentucky girl

I swear I love you
By the moon above you
How bright is it shining in your world
Some morning when you wake up all alone
Just come on home to your blue Kentucky girl

Don't wait to bring great riches home to me
I need no diamond rings or fancy pearls
Just bring yourself, you're all I'll ever need
That's good enough for this blue Kentucky girl

I swear I love you
By the moon above you
How bright is it shining in your world
Some morning when you wake up all alone
Just come on home to your blue Kentucky girl


Free Valentine Picture of a Blue Heart Clipart Image. Click Here to Get Free Images at Valentine-Clipart.com
[click ♥ for ♥-clipart.com]

One thing I have always loved about "Blue Kentucky Girl" is its similarity in sentiment to "The World as Meditation," a poem in which Wallace Stevens describes Penelope, musing dreamily as she awaits the return of Ulysses, her wandering husband:

"She wanted nothing he could not bring her by coming alone.
She wanted no fetchings. His arms would be her necklace
And her belt, the final fortune of their desire."

Noble Penelope is just like the loyal Blue Kentucky Girl who sings

"Don't wait to bring great riches home to me
I need no diamond rings or fancy pearls
Just bring yourself, you're all I'll ever need . . . "

Neither woman craves jewels, treasure, fortune or riches, only the return of her beloved. Wallace's words are particularly beautiful: "She wanted nothing he could not bring her by coming alone." Penelope needs neither necklace nor belt, no "fetchings," just as the Kentucky girl needs "no diamond rings or fancy pearls." The two woman give the same instruction to their heroes, both of whom have "set out to see the world" -- not a world of meditation, but a world of adventure: Come back. Don't wait. Just bring yourself. Just come on home.

P.S.
It would not be right to conclude this post without observing what a fitting cosmic alignment it is that the night sky has joined in honoring the memory of beloved American astronaut and Purdue Boilermaker Neil Armstrong.
May flights of angels -- and a blue moon -- sing thee to thy rest.

1930 - 2012

5 comments:

  1. Don't forget Nanci Griffith's version of "Once in a Very Blue Moon."
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_qXIfK4iJg8

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  2. Suggestions from my brother Bruce:

    Bill Monroe - "Blue Moon Of Kentucky"
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ffhqOy_A8KM

    The Marcels - "Blue Moon"
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lVGMmM2XjiY&feature=related

    ReplyDelete
  3. Update from Bruce RE The Marcels:

    "Better version" -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v0fy1HeJv80

    ReplyDelete
  4. http://mancave.cbslocal.com/2012/08/01/lammas-day/

    ReplyDelete