Friday, November 11, 2011

Just Mooning About

"All that I have to say is, to tell you that the lanthorn is the moon; I, the man i' the moon; this thornbush, my thornbush; and this dog, my dog." --A Midsummer Night's Dream, William Shakespeare.

"The Moon's my constant mistress--," --from Tom o' Bedlam's Song, Anonymous.

"The moon's too bright,
The chain's too tight,
The beast won't go to sleep tonight." --Leonard Cohen.

"I see the Moon,
And the Moon sees me.
The Moon sees someone
I want to see." -- Old Nursery Rhyme.

"The man in the moon
Came tumbling down,
And ask'd his way to Norwich.
He went by the south,
And burnt his mouth,
With supping cold pease porridge." --Old Nursery Rhyme.

"As we turned to go, the man in the moon, tangled in elm-boughs, caught my eye for a moment, and I thought that never had he looked so friendly. He was going to see after them, it was evident; for he was always there, more or less, and it was no trouble to him at all, and he would tell them how things were still going, up here, and throw in a story or two of his own whenever they seemed a trifle dull. It made the going away rather easier, to know one had left somebody behind on the spot; a good fellow, too, cheery, comforting, with a fund of anecdote; a man in whom one had every confidence." --from Dream Days, by Kenneth Grahame.


Brer said...

Variations in the nursery rhymes abound. "I see the moon,/ And the moon sees me./ God bless the moon,/ And God bless me," is one. The man in the moon burns his mouth with either hot or cold, pease or plum porridge; by the way, "Norwich" is pronounced "Norritch."

And I know I'm misquoting Leonard Cohen by adding the word "tonight," but that's the way I always remember it!

Babel said...

Are there any "Woman on the Moon" instances? The "Man" seems to predominate.

Brer said...

Indeed there are. She was sometimes seen in Elizabethan times as a witch or old woman with a bundle of sticks; in China she is a beautiful girl with a rabbit; in Norse mythology there are two children (Hjuki, a boy, and Bil, a girl) carrying water on a pole.

Brer said...

And of course many lunar deities are female (Diana, Luna, etc.)