“What have we here, laddie? Mysterious scribblings? A secret code? No! Poems, no less. Poems, everybody!”

It’s Wednesday morning, and I’m at the train station, but it’s more than half an hour before five o’clock.  Officially, the train station isn’t even open yet—in the sense that the payment kiosks and the bridge and elevator access portals are all closed off.  I suspect there’s at least a bit of dereliction involved on the part of the person tasked with opening them, since the first train arrives in roughly fifteen minutes, and it seems reasonable for the station to be open at least fifteen minutes before the first train.

I couldn’t stay asleep this morning, as is probably obvious, having awakened at around two.  After rolling around a bit and ruing the fact that I never can seem to get any real rest, I gave up, got up, took a shower, got dressed, and headed for the trains.  I’m certainly busted flat in a figurative sense, and I would say that I was feeling nearly faded as my jeans, but I don’t wear jeans, anymore.  The sentiment still applies, nevertheless.  I feel not only faded but frayed and, in places, rather tattered and torn.  I wonder if there’s anything that can be done about it, apart from the obvious.

I did recite the two poems I mentioned yesterday on video, and I uploaded them to YouTube.  I’ll also embed them here.  I decided to make two videos instead of just one with two poems, because the two poems have quite different general ambience.  I also decided to do a little reverb and stuff to my voice in addition to eliminating background noise, and while I was editing the sound for the first, it occurred to me that it might be nice to add a little music.

I didn’t want a copyright strike from YouTube, though for a non-monetized channel like mine these are mostly harmless.  Still it’s a minor irritation, and I happen to have music of my own to use, so for The Second Coming, I took the opening and closing music from my song Come Back Again, which I’ve never “released” but for which I have a “video”, which I had made private.  I guess I’ll make it public again, and will have added a link for it just above.

Anyway, I slowed the combined music down just enough to make it last until it faded out at the end of the poem, then lowered its pitch by three semitones to make it more ominous, and put it through a couple of reverb filters in a row to make it sound distant and hollow, then adjusted the balance and added it to my video before doing just the barest bit of trimming on the ends.  I think it came out nicely.  Here it is:

For the second poem, Alone, I used the opening, the bridge, and some of the final fadeout from my song “Like and Share”, which I slowed, again, reduced in pitch, and put through three different reverb processes, so it’s quite echoey and distant.  I wanted to do that because it’s slightly less somber to start with than the other song, and I needed it to be a little more hollow to make it match the poem.  This is one of my very favorite poems, and since the first time I read it* I felt not just that it had been written for me, but almost as if it had been written by me.  Of course, I cleaned up the audio for my voice as well, taking out background noise and so on.  Thankfully, I’ve done that sort of thing so often now that it’s speedy work.  And here is that video:

I hope, if you enjoy them, that you’ll give them a “thumbs up” and maybe subscribe and possibly even share them.  If you feel like it, please comment on them, either here or on YouTube.  Of course, I’ll always give you the out that the man selling a broken barometer gave to potential buyers:  No pressure.

I’m thinking of doing a video of The Raven, as I think I mentioned yesterday.  For this, I may dispense with the mask, and possibly even with the sunglasses.  Though I strongly dislike seeing my unimpeded face, for that poem such a horrific sight may even be beneficial, and in any case, I want to have full expressivity, not just of voice, but of face, to recite it.

I want to use some background music for it as well, I think, but I don’t know whether I’ll use just one song or multiple ones for different sections.  The latter notion sounds like an awful lot of work.  I do have an old piano piece I wrote as the theme for a really crappy horror screenplay I wrote in high school, and for which I dreamed of making the movie; the music is way better than the script was, as even my most generous friends agreed.  Maybe I’ll do some of that, and also the bad guy’s theme that I wrote for it, on my keyboard at home (maybe using a pipe organ setting, that might be good), and of course, do various things with the audio to make it more suitably ominous for the background of The Raven.

We’ll see.  It’s a lot of work, all that, but it might be engaging enough to keep me at it for a few hours, which is probably all it would take overall.  It’s not like I have anything better to do with my time.  So, if I do anything at all, I’ll probably do that, but I can make no guarantees.  It’s entirely possible that I’ll crash and burn before then, possibly even before tomorrow; but I’m rarely that lucky.

Oh, as an aside, by the time the first train arrived, this morning, they had not yet opened the train station at Hollywood.  If anyone involved with the Tri-rail system reads this, please note that fact, if you haven’t been made aware of it already.  It’s not cool, to make people with chronic pain and other, similar disabilities have to walk all the way down to the nearest crossing and back to get onto the other side of the tracks.  I don’t much mind the exercise myself—I’m self-hateful to an astonishing degree—but there are people I see regularly at the station for whom this seems an onerous and unkind imposition.

That’s about that for today.  I hope you enjoy the poetry recitations a bit, including my original background music.  Have a good day if you can.

*In an Edgar Allan Poe collection I got as a holiday gift when I was about twelve or thirteen, I think, but I may be one year early or late on that.

One thought on ““What have we here, laddie? Mysterious scribblings? A secret code? No! Poems, no less. Poems, everybody!”

  1. Pingback: There was a star blogged, and under that was I born. – Robert Elessar

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