You are viewing a read-only archive of the Blogs.Harvard network. Learn more.

The Longest Now

Ear worm heaven
Tuesday March 17th 2009, 9:38 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

The compleat works of favorite source of ear-worms, Michael Flanders and Donald Swann, has finally returned to my possession after some time apart.  Welcome home!

Here’s a favorite from one of their albums. I transcribed a bit here, but you can find a book of their songs for further reading.

Have Some Madeira, M’dear (listen)

‘That decanter and this hat gave us the idea for this little Edwardian song…

She was young, she was pure, she was new, she was nice.
She was fair, she was sweet seventeen.
He was old, he was vile, and no stranger to vice,
he was base, he was bad, he was mean.

He had slyly inveigled her up to his flat,
to view his collection of stamps,
and he said as he hastened to put out the cat, the wine, his cigar, and the lamps:

Have some madeira, m’dear,
you really have nothing to fear.
I’m not trying to tempt you, that wouldn’t be right,
you shouldn’t drink spirits at this time of night.

Have some madeira, m’dear —
it’s a very much nicer than beer.
I don’t care for sherry, one cannot drink stout,

and port is a wine I can well do without.
It’s simply a case of chacon raison gout;
Have some madeira, m’dear!


Unaware of the wiles of the snake in the grass,
and the fate of the maiden who topes,
she lowered her standards by raising her glass, her courage, her eyes, and his hopes.
She sipped it, she drank it, she drained it she did,
he slyly refilled it again
And he said as he secretly carved one more notch
on the butt of his gold-handled cane:

Have some madeira, m’dear;
I’ve got a small cask of it here,
and once it’s been opened, you know it wont keep.
Do finish it up, it will help you to sleep.
Have some madeira, m’dear,
it’s areally an excellent year.
Now if it were gin, you’d be wrong to say yes
the evil gin does would be hard to assess
(and besides it’s inclined to affect me prowess).
Have some madeira, m’dear!

Then there flashed through her mind what her mother had said
with her antepenultimate breath:
“Oh my child, if you look on the wine when ’tis red,
be prepared for a fate worse
than death!”

She let go her glass with a shrill little cry;
crash-tinkle it fell to the floor.
When he asked what in heaven? she made no reply, up her mind, and a dash for the door!

Have some madeira, m’dear!”
rang out down the hall, loud and clear;
a tremulous cry that was filled with despair
as she paused to take breath in the cool midnight air.
Have some madeira, m’dear“,
the words seemed to ring in her ear…

Until the next morning she woke up in bed,
with a smile on her lips and an ache in her head,
and a beard in her ear- oh, that tickled and said,
Have some madeira m’dear – Ahaha! ‘

Comments Off on Ear worm heaven

Bad Behavior has blocked 240 access attempts in the last 7 days.