Thursday, July 2, 2009

"All future plunges to the past" (Joyce, Pandolfi)

This passage has now been scored by Carl Pandolfi! See below for mp3!

I am starting to think there is a major mistake in the historical record on Charles Manson's primary source. It has been widely reported that The Beatles' White Album (1968) was Manson's primary text, but I am starting to wonder if it wasn't a well thumbed copy of James Joyce's Ulysses (1922) that gave Charlie his ideas.

In a previous paragraph from the novel I broke into lyrics, Joyce used the word "helterskelter," which as we know Manson adopted to name the race war he imagined was forthcoming. And here we have another Manson Family favorite lurking in Ulysses: "creepy-crawl". I'll break the paragraph into how I imagine singing it.

"All future plunges to the past"

Unsheathe your dagger definitions.
Horseness is the whatness of allhorse.
Streams of tendency and eons they worship.
God: noise in the street: peripatetic.
Space: what you damn well have to see.

Through spaces smaller than red globules
of man's blood they creepy-crawl
after Blake's buttocks into eternity
of which this vegetable world is but a shadow.

Hold to the now,
the here, through which
all future plunges to the past.
What a great phrase for a sung outro: "all future plunges to the past". A melody just shoots right out of that sequence of words, as if inherent in them. James Joyce can turn English into a tonal language.

I hear a song unfolding the lyrics as two sung verses, followed by the chorus. Then we would repeat the verse pattern twice instrumentally (guitar solo, or guitar and organ solos) and finish by singing the verse two or three times as an outro.

As for "creepy-crawl," no less an authority than Linda Kasabian defined it (under questioning by prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi in Manson's murder trial): "A creepy-crawling mission is where you creepy-crawl into people's houses and take things..."

Joyce just creepy-crawled into other people's books and took things. One source used here is spelled out on the Joyce Images site, where I creepy-crawled to take the buttocks illustration from Blake, who wrote:

"I know of no other Christianity and of no other Gospel than the liberty both of body and mind to exercise the Divine Arts of Imagination. Imagination the real & eternal World of which this Vegetable Universe is but a faint shadow & in which we shall live in our Eternal or Imaginative Bodies, when these Vegetable Mortal Bodies are no more" (Jerusalem, plate 77, "To the Christians").



For all my talk of how we would score this as Three Fried Men, Carl Pandolfi beat us to the punch!

"All future plunges to the past"
(Carl Pandolfi)
Carl Pandolfi


The complete "Songs from Ulysses" series

"The sailors playing all birds fly"
"And the sun shines for you today"
"Half the ships of the world"
"He rests"
"Less reprehensible"
"Restless. Solitary."
"I'm tired of all them rocks in the sea"

Pretty pretty petticoats"
"Music without Words, pray for us"

"SIGNOR MAFFEI: (With a sinister smile)"

"Sad music"

"Monkey puzzle"

"What kind of a present to give"

"Fires in the houses of poor people"

"Christfox in leather trews"

"All future plunges to the past"

"She was humming"

"Silly billies:"

"Happy Happy"

"A sugarsticky girl"

"Everybody eating everyone else"

"Blood not mine"

"Sell your soul for that"

"Over the motley slush"

"My childhood bends"

Don't you play the giddy ox with me!"

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