Southerly by David Haywood

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Southerly: Golden Lads and Girls All Must

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  • ChrisW,

    Bittersweet indeed, thanks again David for the lovely tributes to your grandfather and grandmother. Congratulations and condolences to your family on the achievement and the loss.

    The golden lad your grandfather's loss is so great, I fear without the golden girl's close support with soup and dress sense he will struggle to recover his muse enough to work on volume 2 of the autobiography, the early NZ years.

    Thanks too to you and Jolisa for the Shakespeare quote that leads me into Cymbeline and other gems. You must be among the more literate of teachers of thermodynamics.

    Gisborne • Since Apr 2009 • 775 posts Report Reply

  • Kris V,

    condolences and girly hugs to the Haywood clan :)
    thank you for sharing & may the memories always remain as lovely as she was

    Shakeytown • Since Nov 2008 • 61 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    All cried out now.............
    My heart goes out to you and your family David.
    :-(
    Your Grandfathers book has a life of its own and your Grandmother will live on between the covers.

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4454 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    A wee bit distant, but still pertinent- I grew up learning "Golden lads and lasses must"-
    there's a couple of warrants for this variant, tho'none in official Shakespeare.
    Rhymes better tho'-

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood,

    Thank you all again for the kind comments on this thread. It's been really helpful to read people's thoughts on this...

    I'm heading up to Auckland for the funeral tomorrow, so it'll be very nice to commune with all my relatives up there. Emma Hart has kindly loaned me some episodes of the BBC's 'Amy Pond' television programme (I think this series may have originally aired under a different name), so this will keep me occupied during my 4-hour wait at Wellington airport.

    To respond to a couple of comments at random:

    I grew up learning "Golden lads and lasses must"

    So did I! And remember being quite surprised when I read the official version in Cymbeline. Also I never noticed the pun until Jolisa pointed it out (above). That's how stupid I am.

    You must be among the more literate of teachers of thermodynamics.

    You'd be surprised! There are some very well-read engineering academics at Canterbury. And some very good writers, too. In fact, in single combat against the English Department, I think English might do much worse than they'd expect.

    FYI I managed to slip in a brief mention of Wilfred Owen and Robert Graves in today's thermo lecture. I'll leave readers to figure out the connection between entropy generation in large-scale refrigeration plants and these poets.

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 864 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie,

    FYI I managed to slip in a brief mention of Wilfred Owen and Robert Graves in today's thermo lecture. I'll leave readers to figure out the connection between entropy generation in large-scale refrigeration plants and these poets.

    Very Thomas Pynchon. If you haven't already, will you be touching on Maxwell's Demon?

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 3291 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Very Thomas Pynchon

    snap

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15762 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Very Thomas Pynchon

    snap

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15762 posts Report Reply

  • Ben Austin,

    David, please accept my sympathies to both you and your family.

    London • Since Nov 2006 • 861 posts Report Reply

  • Deborah,

    I'm so sorry, David. And sad that your grandparents' long married life has come to its end.

    Manawatu City • Since Nov 2006 • 1276 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    FYI I managed to slip in a brief mention of Wilfred Owen and Robert Graves in today's thermo lecture

    .......the poetic "disassembly" of body parts......??

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1459 posts Report Reply

  • Richard C,

    ... as chimney-sweepers, come to dust.

    Sincerely sorry for your loss, David.

    Apropos the quotation from Cymbeline.

    Somebody - might have been Frank Kermode, or Stephen Greenblatt; I can't remember - pointed out that 'chimney-sweepers' was Warwickshire dialect, used to describe a dandelion seed-head.

    I don't know if that's true, but I'd like to think so. To my mind, it makes the image even more poignant...

    Waiheke Island • Since Oct 2007 • 27 posts Report Reply

  • Tim Michie,

    Belated but sincere sympathy David.

    Auckward • Since Nov 2006 • 522 posts Report Reply

  • Briar Gregory,

    David is being his usual self-effacing, modest self regarding his contribution to his grandfather's book. He spent hours and hours getting it ready for publication, a true labour of love and respect for his grandparents. The book is something the whole family is tremendously proud of, especially his Grandad.

    And I don't want to read a word of criticism about Jolisa Gracewood. She is a generous, wonderful woman.

    David's Aunt

    Auckland • Since Jun 2010 • 1 posts Report Reply

  • Jolisa,

    You should be proud, Briar - it's a wonderful book and a real heirloom for all. Glad to help with its delivery.

    Also I never noticed the pun until Jolisa pointed it out (above).

    Actually, I had never noticed it either, even after I (apparently) pointed it out. I wonder if it worked as a pun in Shakespeare's time? Or if dusting is entirely a post-17th C activity?

    Somebody - might have been Frank Kermode, or Stephen Greenblatt; I can't remember - pointed out that 'chimney-sweepers' was Warwickshire dialect, used to describe a dandelion seed-head.

    Absolutely gorgeous, and I had to go googling. The dandelion connection seems to be an obscure point of contention among those who favour Marlowe as the author of some or all of the plays. And Marjorie Garber is credited with making the link (although possibly she was citing someone else?) here :

    In Elizabethan London, poor children ("lads and girls") were sometimes employed as chimney-sweepers because they had bodies small enough to fit, and of course "coming to dust" was for them all in a day's work; the lines' great power lies in the modulation from the mundane to the mortal—from the dust in the chimney to the dust of death. But chimney-sweepers (as Marjorie Garber points out in her great book Shakespeare After All ) was also a colloquialism for dandelions (whose blooms resemble brooms), and when dandelions turn from spring gold to summer dust, that dust is fertile; they are sprouting the seeds of next spring's crop. The elegy, which seems on its surface to pronounce a universal doom, hints quietly at continuities—even at resurrections.

    Auckland, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 1408 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood,

    My Auntie Briar wrote:

    David is being his usual self-effacing, modest self

    First time I've ever been called that! But very pleased to have been involved with the production of the book -- even though my contribution was genuinely rather small.

    Jolisa wrote:

    [Quoting David Haywood:]
    > Also I never noticed the pun until Jolisa
    > pointed it out (above).
    Actually, I had never noticed it either, even after I (apparently) pointed it out.

    Oh, I misunderstood you then! I had assumed the Dick Van Dyke thing must have been a pun -- how cruelly I have misjudged the fine lyricists at Disney (not to mention the genius who coached Mr Van Dyke with his remarkable Cockney accent).

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 864 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood,

    RE: Chimney Sweeps/Dandelions

    I was utterly entranced when I read this in Bill Bryson's otherwise very slight biography of Shakespeare. Unfortunately, as with several other "facts" cited in Bryson's books, when I thought about it for a few minutes it seemed highly improbable. Remembering my history of the Industrial Revolution, I recalled the various regulations to protect child chimney sweeps (1840s-ish), which were enacted not too long after the invention of the modern chimney brush (I think there was a patent issued about 1800, and then an improved system patented in the 1830s). So yes, it would have been quite a clever bit of poetry for Shakespeare to allude to something that wasn't invented until a couple of hundred years after his death.

    Incidentally, and just to bore the socks off everyone, the chimney is a comparatively recent invention (in Britain) -- popular in dwellings only after coal became a commonly-used fuel. In Shakespeare's time (certainly his youth) chimneys would have been the province of big mansions and the like.

    Jolisa wrote:

    I wonder if it worked as a pun in Shakespeare's time? Or if dusting is entirely a post-17th C activity?

    My OED cites the first usage of 'duster' as 1576 (when Shakespeare was 12). And certainly the Romans had a word for dust ('pulvis' from which we get pulverize; only the third time in my life that learning Latin has proven useful) -- but perhaps the Romans just left the dust lying around, as was their practice in Pompeii. I've always imagined that the Spartans would have been keen on dusting, but have no actual proof of this.

    At any rate, if you want to avoid dusting, I'd suggest that you set your time machine for a whole bunch before 1564. Maybe the Pliocene?

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 864 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    When in doubt, flee to the expert- in this case, the expat and late-lamented Eric Partridge: dust came from OE, OS, ON, OHG & OLG...

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • JLM,

    My daughter told me about the chimney-sweeper=dandelion hypothesis from her Otago English Lit classes a decade ago, and her lecturer, Shef ??? claimed some sort of credit, either personal or as part of a team. I'll ask her. Like David, I was absolutely entranced, and, unlike him, I'm still a believer. It made that song perfect for me, and it's too good to let go.

    And if you want near perfection, try and find a copy of Cleo Laine singing it - it was on a record called Shakespeare and all that jazz.

    Judy Martin's southern sl… • Since Apr 2007 • 221 posts Report Reply

  • ChrisW,

    I went googling a few days ago too and found this reference from early 1970s
    to Shakespeare's inferred intent from his Warwickshire origins that golden lads = dandelions in flower and chimney-sweepers = dandelion heads in seed, from the close resemblance of their shape to the brush used. But also found the point that in Shakespeare's day chimney-sweepers were non-golden boys who climbed inside chimneys, the special chimney-sweeping brush came 200 years later. So chimney-sweeper = dandelion seed-head must be associated with Warwickshire after Shakespeare, not as ancient 'dialect'.

    My bet - that a 19th century Warwickshire teacher parochially keen on Shakespeare noticed the uncanny connections of the new chimney-sweeping technology to the local meaning of golden lads, and pointed out the multi-layered retrospective pun in Cymbeline to his/her students - and a slang chimney-sweepers term for dandelion seed-heads spread through the community, a slower shorter-range spread than that from the 1960s Disney writers of Mary Poppins referencing Shakespeare, or as it might be via the interweb these days.

    Gisborne • Since Apr 2009 • 775 posts Report Reply

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