Gearing up

I like my little stack of French books. As I read them, I come across a lot of words I don’t know, but that’s okay. That still happens to me when I read English, too.

Le Livre de Mormon/Les Doctrine et Alliances/La Perle de Grand Prix.  Can I just say right off how literary tenses are just weird? I actually ordered this triple combination for an upcoming trip, where our little branch of 20 people will meet every Sunday for church, probably in the hotel lobby. I needed a complete set of scriptures. So, I also ordered La Sainte Bible, though it isn’t an LDS edition.

L’enfant noir by Camera Laye. Autobiographical; tells of a boy’s life between the village and the city. Going to the Koran school, going to the university and leaving his family and missing his mother.

Bescherelle’s Complete Guide to Conjugating 12,000 French Verbs. This reference book will teach you how to conjugate a bunch of verbs (12,000) based on 82 verb conjugating patterns. Super useful. I use it a lot, and it’s great for learning verb vocabulary. Verbcabulary.

La Château de Ma Mère by Marcel Pagnol. Autobiographical, nostalgic. It’s beautifully written. There’s a lot of childhood joy of the French countryside mixed in with sorrow and sadness that’s so typical of the French.

Antigone by Jean Anouilh. Oh, you know the story. Antigone’s brothers kill themselves over throne succession. One’s buried, the other’s left for the vultures. Antigone pushes for the birdfood brother to be buried, but Creon won’t have it, because he needs to teach the kingdom a lesson. This is a tragedy, and the Chorus has sung from the beginning that Antigone dies at the end. It’s her destiny, so she and some other people die. Resistance/Compliance, tragedy/drama, DeGaulle/Pétain.

Une si longue lettre by Mariama Bâ. Semi-autobiographical. Talks about the heartache of polygamy in African villages. A woman’s husband decides to take another wife after 30 years. Tradition doesn’t mean there won’t be resentment and pain.

Le Petit Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. A really special story. Popular. Read it.

I also have a book of fairy tales, and I ordered another book that I hope will arrive before my trip. I need to read it.

I like love songs

I am not in love, but I know a lot of people who are.

Damn the springtime.

Lover seems to carry a different meaning today than it used to. I had a professor who couldn’t help giggling whenever he heard or said the word. I giggle when I think about this professor giggling. He’s a funny guy.

The word today has extramarital overtones, as if the one you’re married to cannot possibly love you the way a lover can.

This song seems to portray a lover as, plainly, someone who loves.

Yet, it doesn’t downplay how complicated relationships are. You can feel the aching and longing in the words that fuse so well with the music. The song gives me a little insight about being in love; about being a lover and having one.

It’s a simple and beautiful duet, by two artists who know how to sing this type of song perfectly: Rachael Yamagata and Ray LaMontagne.

Oh lover, hold on
’till I come back again
For these arms are growin’ tired,
And my tales are wearing thin

If you’re patient I will surprise,
When you wake up I’ll have come

All the anger will settle down
And we’ll go do all the things we should have done

Yes I remember what we said
As we lay down to bed
I’ll be here if you will only come back home

Oh lover, I’m lost
Because the road I’ve chosen beckons me away

Oh lover, don’t you roam
Now I’m fighting words I never thought I’d say

But I remember what we said
As we lay down to bed
I’ll forgive you oh
If you just come back home

Oh lover, I’m old
You’ll be out there and be thinking just of me

And I will find you down the road
And we’ll return back home to where we’re meant to be

’cause I remember what we said
As we lay down to bed
We’ll be back soon as we make history.