Colin Wilson Tribute

by In The Nursery

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Byzantium 03:24
The unpurged images of day recedes; The Emperor's drunken soldiery are abed; Night resonance recedes, night-walkers' song After great cathedral gong; A starlit or a moonlit dome disdains All that man is, All mere complexities, The fury and the mire of human veins. Before me floats an image, man or shade, Shade more than man, more image than a shade; For Hades' bobbin bound in mummy-cloth May unwind the winding path; A mouth that has no moisture and no breath Breathless mouths may summon; I hail the superhuman; I call it death-in-life and life-in-death. Miracle, bird or golden handiwork, More miracle than bird or handiwork, Planted on the star-lit golden bough, Can like the cocks of Hades crow, Or, by the moon embittered, scorn aloud In glory of changeless metal Common bird or petal And all complexities of mire or blood. At midnight on the Emperor's pavement flit Flames that no faggot feeds, nor steel has lit, Nor storm disturbs, flames begotten of flame, Where blood-begotten spirits come And all complexities of fury leave, Dying into a dance, An agony of trance, An agony of flame that cannot singe a sleeve. Astraddle on the dolphin's mire and blood, Spirit after spirit! The smithies break the flood, The golden smithies of the Emperor! Marbles of the dancing floor Break bitter furies of complexity, Those images that yet Fresh images beget, That dolphin-torn, that gong-tormented sea. Byzantium by W. B. Yeats
Last night, ah, yesternight, betwixt her lips and mine There fell thy shadow, Cynara! thy breath was shed Upon my soul between the kisses and the wine; And I was desolate and sick of an old passion, Yea, I was desolate and bowed my head: I have been faithful to thee, Cynara! in my fashion. All night upon mine heart I felt her warm heart beat, Night-long within mine arms in love and asleep she lay; Surely the kisses of her bought red mouth were sweet; But I was desolate and sick of an old passion, When I awoke and found the dawn was gray: I have been faithful to thee, Cynara! in my fashion. I have forgot much, Cynara! gone with the wind, Flung roses, roses riotously with the throng, Dancing, to put thy pale, lost lilies out of the mind; But I was desolate and sick of an old passion, Yea, all the time, because the dance was long: I have been faithful to thee, Cynara! in my fashion. I cried for madder music and for stronger wine, But when the feast is finished and the lamps expire, Then falls thy shadow, Cynara! the night is thine; And I am desolate and sick of an old passion, Yea hungry for the lips of my desire: I have been faithful to thee, Cynara! in my fashion. Non sum qualis eram bonae sub regano Cynarae by Ernest Dowson (1867 - 1900)
Motive 03:37
We caught the tread of dancing feet, We loitered down the moonlit street, And stopped beneath the harlot's house. Inside, above the din and fray, We heard the loud musicians play The "Treues Liebes Herz" of Strauss. Like strange mechanical grotesques, Making fantastic arabesques, The shadows raced across the blind. We watched the ghostly dancers spin To sound of horn and violin, Like black leaves wheeling in the wind. Like wire-pulled automatons, Slim silhouetted skeletons Went sidling through the slow quadrille. They took each other by the hand, And danced a stately saraband; Their laughter echoed thin and shrill. Sometimes a clockwork puppet pressed A phantom lover to her breast, Sometimes they seemed to try to sing. Sometimes a horrible marionette Came out, and smoked its cigarette Upon the steps like a living thing. Then turning to my love, I said, "The dead are dancing with the dead, The dust is whirling with the dust." But she - she heard the violin, And left my side, and entered in: Love passed into the house of lust. Then suddenly the tune went false, The dancers wearied of the waltz, The shadows ceased to wheel and whirl. And down the long and silent street, The dawn, with silver-sandalled feet, Crept like a frightened girl. The Harlot's House by Oscar Wilde
We who with songs beguile your pilgrimage And swear that Beauty lives though lilies die, We Poets of the proud old lineage Who sing to find your hearts, we know not why, - What shall we tell you? Tales, marvelous tales Of ships and stars and isles where good men rest, Where nevermore the rose of sunset pales, And winds and shadows fall towards the West: And there the world’s first huge white-bearded kings In dim glades sleeping, murmur in their sleep, And closer round their breasts the ivy clings, Cutting its pathway slow and red and deep. And how beguile you? Death has no repose Warmer and deeper than the Orient sand Which hides the beauty and bright faith of those Who make the Golden Journey to Samarkand. And now they wait and whiten peaceably, Those conquerors, those poets, those so fair: They know time comes, not only you and I, But the whole world shall whiten, here or there; When those long caravans that cross the plain With dauntless feet and sound of silver bells Put forth no more for glory or for gain, Take no more solace from the palm-girt wells. When the great markets by the sea shut fast All that calm Sunday that goes on and on: When even lovers find their peace at last, And Earth is but a star, that once had shone. The Golden Journey to Samarkand (Prologue) by James Elroy Flecker The Day of the Days evil things At last the tranquil Angelus of evening rings Night's curtain down for comfort and oblivion Of all the vanities observed by the sun: Sufficient for the day are the day's evil things! Ernest Dowson's poem: Vesperal
The Painter 04:26
Swear by what the sages spoke Round the Mareotic Lake That the Witch of Atlas knew, Spoke and set the cocks a-crow. Swear by those horsemen, by those women Complexion and form prove superhuman, That pale, long-visaged company That air in immortality Completeness of their passions won; Now they ride the wintry dawn Where Ben Bulben sets the scene. Here's the gist of what they mean. Many times man lives and dies Between his two eternities, That of race and that of soul, And ancient Ireland knew it all. Whether man die in his bed Or the rifle knocks him dead, A brief parting from those dear Is the worst man has to fear. Though grave-diggers' toil is long, Sharp their spades, their muscles strong. They but thrust their buried men Back in the human mind again. You that Mitchel's prayer have heard, "Send war in our time, O Lord!' Know that when all words are said And a man is fighting mad, Something drops from eyes long blind, He completes his partial mind, For an instant stands at ease, Laughs aloud, his heart at peace. Even the wisest man grows tense With some sort of violence Before he can accomplish fate, Know his work or choose his mate. Poet and sculptor, do the work, Nor let the modish painter shirk What his great forefathers did. Bring the soul of man to God, Make him fill the cradles right. Measurement began our might: Forms a stark Egyptian thought, Forms that gentler phidias wrought. Michael Angelo left a proof On the Sistine Chapel roof, Where but half-awakened Adam Can disturb globe-trotting Madam Till her bowels are in heat, proof that there's a purpose set Before the secret working mind: Profane perfection of mankind. Quattrocento put in paint On backgrounds for a God or Saint Gardens where a soul's at ease; Where everything that meets the eye, Flowers and grass and cloudless sky, Resemble forms that are or seem When sleepers wake and yet still dream. And when it's vanished still declare, With only bed and bedstead there, That heavens had opened. Gyres run on; When that greater dream had gone Calvert and Wilson, Blake and Claude, Prepared a rest for the people of God, Palmer's phrase, but after that Confusion fell upon our thought. Irish poets, earn your trade, Sing whatever is well made, Scorn the sort now growing up All out of shape from toe to top, Their unremembering hearts and heads Base-born products of base beds. Sing the peasantry, and then Hard-riding country gentlemen, The holiness of monks, and after Porter-drinkers' randy laughter; Sing the lords and ladies gay That were beaten into the clay Through seven heroic centuries; Cast your mind on other days That we in coming days may be Still the indomitable Irishry. Under bare Ben Bulben's head In Drumcliff churchyard Yeats is laid. An ancestor was rector there Long years ago, a church stands near, By the road an ancient cross. No marble, no conventional phrase; On limestone quarried near the spot By his command these words are cut: Cast a cold eye On life, on death. Horseman, pass by! Under Ben Bulben by W. B. Yeats
Pale amber sunlight falls across The reddening October trees, That hardly sway before a breeze As soft as summer: summer's loss Seems little, dear! on days like these. Let misty autumn be our part! The twilight of the year is sweet: Where shadow and the darkness meet Our love, a twilight of the heart Eludes a little time's deceit. Are we not better and at home In dreamful Autumn, we who deem No harvest joy is worth a dream? A little while and night shall come, A little while, then, let us dream. Beyond the pearled horizons lie Winter and night: awaiting these We garner this poor hour of ease, Until love turn from us and die Beneath the drear November trees. Autumnal by Ernest Dowson
The fire is out, and spent the warmth thereof (This is the end of every song man sings!) "Dregs" from Decorations by Ernest Dowson


This album acts is a tribute to Colin Wilson who died last year. In The Nursery were fortunate to have spent time with the author, capturing recordings of him reading extracts of his favourite poetry that would form part of the album Anatomy Of A Poet (1994).


released December 10, 2013


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In The Nursery Sheffield, UK

In The Nursery is the Sheffield-based musical project centered around the nucleus of twin brothers Klive and Nigel Humberstone who have been producing music since 1981.
Their cinematic style blends electronics, classical arrangements, orchestral percussion and soundscapes evoking a timeless quality.
ITN’s music is licensed regularly for TV, film soundtracks and trailers.
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