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PostPosted: Mon June 3rd, 2013, 23:44 GMT 
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I adore this song. It is mysterious and the lyric is poetic and beautiful. I don't want it to end when I listen to it.


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PostPosted: Tue June 4th, 2013, 02:27 GMT 
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great Band type arrangement, roger recorded it in 1977
after bob cut it in 1975 - though it wasn't released till 1991, right,

roger here says bob gave it to him?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3a05vtxZIHg
Roger McGuinn - Thunderbyrd - "Golden Loom"


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PostPosted: Fri June 7th, 2013, 15:19 GMT 
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Lovely song - and lots of golden looms in Bake's work, for instance in the prophetic book Jerusalem : The Emanation of the Giant Albion -

The Male is a furnace of beryl; the Female is a golden loom


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PostPosted: Sat June 8th, 2013, 08:58 GMT 

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When this came out officially there was general astonishment as no-one seemed to have it, not even serious collectors. I will never forget Larry Eden (Lambchop) phoning me when we got our hands on all those treasures and after a 2 hour rant of pleasure he paused for breath and asked me: "Do you know what one the freaks will really go for?"......there was a long pause and he said "Golden Loom". I couldn't answer him though as I was desperately trying to stop myself bursting out in laughter as Lambchop was the freakiest Dylan freak I knew............


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PostPosted: Sun June 9th, 2013, 13:24 GMT 
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'theme of weaving in mythology is ancient, and its lost mythic lore probably accompanied the early spread of this art.
... weaving is a mystery within woman's sphere'

song 'Golden loom' has 'obscure allusions to alchemical symbolism and Jungian archetypes'.
'dream song with fleeting suggestions ....the fisheman's daughter, weaver of destiny..lotus of isis representing the feminine or passive power'

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weaving_(mythology)

'Cord of affection thrilling extatic on the iron Reel:
To the golden Loom of Love!
to the moth-labourd Woof
A Garment and Cradle weaving for the infantine Terror:
For fear; at entering the gate into our World of cruel

http://www.english.uga.edu/nhilton/Blak ... pter3.html


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PostPosted: Tue June 11th, 2013, 13:07 GMT 
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In the Rumpelstiltskin tale, the girl's father claims she can spin straw into gold. Maybe the singer laments because without her working her magic on him with her gold-spinning loom, he'll no longer be a golden man but a man of straw.

In China the seventh day of the seventh moon is remembered for the young lovers who were separated by a jealous Celestial Queen Mother. Her daughter, the Goddess Weaver (who wove the Milky Way), fell in love with a mortal cowherd, so she separated them. The darkness that fell over the earth and heaven when the daughter stopped weaving the Milky Way was overcome by letting the lovers meet once a year, on the seventh day of the seventh moon. The star references in the song might relate to this. The girl is associated with the star Vega, and the boy with the star Altair.
Vega is the brightest star in the constellation Lyra (the lyre, which represents the harp of the great mythical musician Orpheus (Dylan), and Altair is the eagle star. There are many variations of the story but it's always about stars and the Milky Way and the sadness of lovers being separated. It's celebrated as a sad sort of Valentine's Day.


Last edited by planet drop on Tue June 11th, 2013, 13:31 GMT, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue June 11th, 2013, 13:27 GMT 
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I looked at the lyrics again and saw this:

"I walk across the bridge in the dismal light "

In the Chinese tale/myth, the lovers always meet in the centre of a bridge. The dismal light might be because the girl no longer makes the stars shine so brightly, having a broken heart and all. :?


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PostPosted: Tue June 11th, 2013, 13:42 GMT 
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I looked again at the lyrics.

It's happening on a "Smoky autumn night".

I'd like to think the annual meeting falls in autumn. Not sure because the Chinese calendar isn't lunar, but solar-lunar.

I'm going to stop now before my head explodes from trying to decipher the Chinese calendar..


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PostPosted: Tue June 11th, 2013, 14:24 GMT 
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I found that very interesting, Planet Drop, so quickly did some massive in-depth research (wikipedia), and there was a different telling of the story, which I think chimed a bit more with the song -


In another story[citation needed], popular throughout Asia and with many differing versions, the Jade Emperor has a daughter named Zhinü (simplified Chinese: 织女; traditional Chinese: 織女; pinyin: zhī nǚ or Chih'nü, literally: weaver girl). She is most often represented as responsible for weaving colorful clouds in the heaven. In some versions she is the Goddess Weaver, daughter of the Jade Emperor and the Celestial Queen Mother, who weaves the Silver River (known in the West as the Milky Way), which gives light to heaven and earth. In other versions, she is a seamstress who works for the Jade Emperor.

Every day Zhinü descended to earth with the aid of a magical robe to bathe. One day, a lowly cowherd named Niu Lang (Chinese: 牛郎; pinyin: niú láng) spotted Zhinü as she bathed in a stream. Niu Lang fell instantly in love with her and stole her magic robe which she had left on the bank of the stream, leaving her unable to escape back to Heaven. When Zhinü emerged from the water, Niu Lang grabbed her and carried her back to his home.

When the Jade Emperor heard of this matter, he was furious but unable to intercede, since in the meantime his daughter had fallen in love and married the cowherd. As time passed, Zhinü grew homesick and began to miss her father. One day, she came across a box containing her magic robe which her husband had hidden. She decided to visit her father back in Heaven, but once she returned, the Jade Emperor summoned a river to flow across the sky (the Milky Way), which Zhinü was unable to cross to return to her husband. The Emperor took pity on the young lovers, and so once a year on the seventh day of the seventh month of the lunar calendar, he allows them to meet on a bridge over the river.

The story refers to constellations in the night sky. Zhinü is the star Vega in the constellation of Lyra east of the Milky Way, and Niu Lang is the star Altair in the constellation of Aquila west of the Milky Way. Under the first quarter moon (7th day) of the seventh lunar month (around August), the lighting condition in the sky causes the Milky Way to appear dimmer, hence the story that the two lovers are no longer separated in that one particular day each year.

The seventh day of the seventh month of the lunar calendar is a holiday in China called Qixi Festival, which is a day for young lovers much like Valentine's Day in the West. In Japan, it is called Tanabata (star day), and in Korea, it is called Chilseok. If it rains on that day, it is said to be Zhinü crying tears of happiness in being reunited with her husband.


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PostPosted: Tue June 11th, 2013, 14:25 GMT 
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Love all your interpretation influences, planet drop, and I'm going w them. Thank you SO MUCH.

Def stop before you explode - we'll need you for future Dylan lyric.translations


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PostPosted: Tue June 11th, 2013, 14:31 GMT 
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In that wikipedia (citation needed) version I posted, called The Weaver Girl and the Cowherd, the Milky Way was conjured to prevent the Weaver returning to earth, and she can only do so on one day, when the light is dimmer (dismal). There's also the rain/tears, the bridge over water.
I sort of wonder if Dylan didn't witness something to do with this festival in San Francisco, and then shape a song around it. It's a brilliant call, anyway, Planet Drop.


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PostPosted: Tue June 11th, 2013, 14:47 GMT 
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Thanks for posting that version of the tale Trev. It's a lovely fit to the lyrics. I heard the tale in China years ago but forgot most of it. it was nice tonight to rediscover it while trying to interpret the lyrics. The tale was told to me to explain the willow pattern on crockery. I'll look for an image to post. Maybe dylan had the same explanation given to him.

And thaks for your support Anything But a Roll. It's a bit daunting to venture into these waters.


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PostPosted: Tue June 11th, 2013, 14:55 GMT 
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Image

There's always a boat in the bay...this is also in the song. The Chinese girl told me the birds represent the souls of the lovers. it's a very old tale. Trev, your version is closer to the tale I'd half-forgotten. You can see 3 people on the bridge...the lovers and the father. I remember now that's what Josephine said.


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PostPosted: Tue June 11th, 2013, 15:08 GMT 
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I can't help myself.

In your version Trev the cowherd falls in love with her while she's bathing in a stream. In the lyrics they're washing (bathing) their feet. The willow pattern always depicts a weeping willow. The lyrics have a eucalypt (not sure if that's plural...I'm just rambling now).
Also in the lyrics it's the lovers' shadows that meet, which link with the tale, and the lion is very 'Chinese", as well as being a constellation (stars again).

You probably regret getting me started now that I won't shut up :roll:


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PostPosted: Tue June 11th, 2013, 15:24 GMT 
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In one of your posts Trev you mentioned that Blake sprang to mind. That was also my initial response because I once wrote a poem titled 'Blake's Loom'. It was an homage to one of his poems...sort of a reframing of it (some might even claim, dare I say it...I plagairised it. For the life of me I can't remember the poem that inspired it. I'm doomed now to trawl through his opus.

This is my reframing:

Blake’s loom

With threads from good deeds,
fine garments we weave
in tints sublime;

till freed we glide heaven,
gossamer seraphim,
beyond this polystyrene world.

Sackcloth coarse and frayed the sinner spins,
envelopes of sin;
but time tells and grim drabs
to Tartarus slide ― on Ixion’s wheel
for eternity to spin.


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PostPosted: Tue June 11th, 2013, 16:22 GMT 
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planet drop wrote:
Image

There's always a boat in the bay...this is also in the song. The Chinese girl told me the birds represent the souls of the lovers. it's a very old tale. Trev, your version is closer to the tale I'd half-forgotten. You can see 3 people on the bridge...the lovers and the father. I remember now that's what Josephine said.


Thank you, Planet Drop and Trev!

I inherited a set of these very dishes not too long ago. I loved them instantly, but will now take a much closer look.


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PostPosted: Wed June 12th, 2013, 01:59 GMT 
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planet drop wrote:
I can't help myself.

In your version Trev the cowherd falls in love with her while she's bathing in a stream. In the lyrics they're washing (bathing) their feet. The willow pattern always depicts a weeping willow. The lyrics have a eucalypt (not sure if that's plural...I'm just rambling now).
Also in the lyrics it's the lovers' shadows that meet, which link with the tale, and the lion is very 'Chinese", as well as being a constellation (stars again).

You probably regret getting me started now that I won't shut up :roll:


I absolutely think you should keep going Planet Drop, because there are a huge number of telling similarities between the tale and the song.

The lotus flower is also a potent symbol for the Chinese. I'll add a bit of a sidenote, which I think it's less likely (though still entirely feasible) that Dylan was aware of : the lotus flower is the symbol of summer in Chinese culture, which fits in with "drifting away on a summer's day where the wildflowers bloom", and the fact that Qixi typically occurs in August.

Regarding the season that the song takes place in, there is a slightly (typically) mysterious contrast between "smoky autumn night" and the mention of "summer day" later - however, there's no doubt that a key section of the song occurs in summer, which fits absolutely with Qixi. Nonetheless, I do know that Qixi has occurred as late as August 30th in 1968, August 27th in 1971, and August 24th in 1974, which would be as summer transitioned into autumn. I think in the song Dylan is using that heightened shading from summer into autumn to reflect the transience of love. Anyway, it seems very Dylanesque (inspired or careless?) to have an autumn night and a summer day.


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PostPosted: Wed June 12th, 2013, 02:39 GMT 
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Thanks Trev. I'm glad you persevered with the seasons!

I can't help but think the song embroiders sentiments from the Cinese tale, from the Rumpelstiltskin tale, and from a kind of Blakean sentiment.

The Qixi thread seems overt, but interweaving that is a thread that seems to be about who spins the thread of one's destiny.

I trawled Blake's poems last night and am not sure but I think I wrote 'Blake's Loom' influenced by 'Auguries of Innocence', which implies that your deeds are the threads that create a life-tapestry either of heaven or of hell...whereas the Rumpelstiltskin tale impies that a beloved woman weaves and shapes your destiny...whether you shine like a man of gold or are as dry and empty as a man of straw. In the Chinese tale, the destiny is shaped by a third party.


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PostPosted: Thu June 13th, 2013, 15:15 GMT 
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don't think these are necessarily mutually exclusive . . .
Quote:
the Rumpelstiltskin tale impies that a beloved woman weaves and shapes your destiny...whether you shine like a man of gold or are as dry and empty as a man of straw. In the Chinese tale, the destiny is shaped by a third party.


Perhaps in the Chinese tale it is because the princess and the cowherd understand that the beloved woman weaves and shapes destiny that they know they must be together and honor their love.


How totally cool of you all to bring together all these different threads of stories and relate them to this rather obscure lyric. Often, in myths, the fe/male metaphors stand for the power of creation -- one might say that man represents God or all that is and the woman represents an existing but not manifest (?) force that animates all that is. But myths are layered and move into the realm of legend as well because after all -- there are a limited number of iconic constructs.

Enjoying your discourse . . .


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PostPosted: Fri June 14th, 2013, 02:07 GMT 
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Thanks for your interesting contribution Blue.

I picture the dilemma faced by the Chinese lovers as a reinforcement of the Confucian ideal of the father wielding the power and having to be honoured and obeyed. That they are able to be together every year in the tale must have given great satisfaction to young lovers over the generations the tale's been told.


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PostPosted: Fri June 14th, 2013, 13:52 GMT 
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-- why fisherman, do you think? I never heard of the connection with the weaver/loom until now -- very interesting. Who is the fisherman?

Alouette wrote
Quote:
the fisherman's daughter, weaver of destiny


planet drop wrote
Quote:
I picture the dilemma faced by the Chinese lovers as a reinforcement of the Confucian ideal of the father wielding the power and having to be honoured and obeyed.

yeah, bad times for everybody else . . . :(
or in cosmic terms: (when matter becomes more important than spirit?)
Quote:
That they are able to be together every year in the tale must have given great satisfaction to young lovers over the generations the tale's been told.

There's also the Persephone/Hades story (Greek, I think) -- in this case it is not out of jealousy but love that the mother demands that Hades not keep Persephone in his realm 100% of the time.


Last edited by blue on Fri June 14th, 2013, 14:03 GMT, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri June 14th, 2013, 13:56 GMT 
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It's a song about watersports


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PostPosted: Mon June 24th, 2013, 07:15 GMT 
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blue wrote:
-- why fisherman, do you think? I never heard of the connection with the weaver/loom until now -- very interesting. Who is the fisherman?

Well, maybe just because 'fisherman's daughter' rhymes with 'water'. :?


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PostPosted: Mon June 24th, 2013, 10:40 GMT 
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..The Piscean age—the age of the fishes, the age marked by the appearance of the Fisherman,
whose religion was symbolized by a fish—would eventually give way to the age of Aquarius—the age of the water-bearer..

http://jungiancenter.org/essay/preparin ... attunement


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PostPosted: Mon June 24th, 2013, 11:58 GMT 
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That's an interesting link Alouette.

My initial response to 'fisherman' was 'Fisher King', so I googled till I found a version of the legend / myth that might correspond to the song.

The lyrics lament being abandoned by a lover, whose departure leaves him wounded...we discussed above that he felt she was the arbiter of his destiny. In effect, he is damaged or wounded. Often the Fisher King's appellation is the 'Wounded King'.

The following is a literary reference:

Chrétien de Troyes' Perceval
http://www.lib.rochester.edu/camelot/fisherking/fkessay.htm
"As a literary character, the Fisher King originates in Chrétien de Troyes' Perceval. The reader first encounters the Fisher King when Perceval meets a fisherman who offers Perceval lodging. In his castle, the fisherman reveals himself to be a king who is weak and bedridden, and yet has such an abundance of wealth that he can provide his guest a grand feast. During the feast, Perceval witnesses a Grail Procession but fails to ask his host any questions pertaining to what he sees. As a result, all the inhabitants of the castle disappear the next morning (Chrétien de Troyes 32-37).
The fisherman is later said to be the rich Fisher King who "was wounded in a battle and completely crippled, so that he's helpless now, for he was struck by a javelin through both his thighs; and he still suffers from it so much that he can't mount a horse. But when he wants to engage in some pleasure and sport he has himself placed in a boat and goes fishing with a hook" (38). His healing depends on Perceval and his asking of the necessary Grail questions, such as "who does the Grail serve?" and "what is the meaning of the Bleeding Lance?" (38-39). This description, of a suffering king who depends for his healing on another person, becomes the prototype for all variations of the Fisher King in literature."

I know this is a stretch, but I'm enjoying the discussion.


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