This weekend I celebrated the 100th birthday of the Notre Dame Glee Club in style, catching up with all my old, older, and not-so-old brothers, and joining a cast of 500+ for a centennial concert in downtown South Bend. Total number of MV members greeted: 3.
One of the side benefits of singing with this vocal group was memorizing a lot of poetry. Edmund Waller. Robert Frost. Christina Rossetti. Ben Johnson. And — a contemporary piece of music, to be sure — e.e. cummings (1894-1962). Here’s one that we did roundabout my sophomore year. It was paired with "Dominic Has a Doll." Both were terrific, and I learned as much about the poems by getting my mouth and lungs and brain around these weird choral settings, as I did in American lit, which I was taking the same year. Enjoy! -ed.
maggie and milly and molly and may
maggie and milly and molly and may went down to the beach(to play one day) and maggie discovered a shell that sang so sweetly she couldn’t remember her troubles,and milly befriended a stranded star whose rays five languid fingers were; and molly was chased by a horrible thing which raced sideways while blowing bubbles:and may came home with a smooth round stone as small as a world and as large as alone. For whatever we lose(like a you or a me) it’s always ourselves we find in the sea