Thursday, November 24, 2005

Ira Levin, You Old Softie

The lyrics I feel like quoting today are some very sweet, sentimental lyrics from an unexpected source: Ira Levin, of "Rosemary's Baby" fame and "A Kiss Before Dying" acclaim.

This is a song from Levin's musical Drat! The Cat! It's a song called "She's Roses," sung by the innocent, almost childlike hero of the show, Patrolman Bob Purefoy, after falling in love with the heroine (at this point he doesn't know that she's the notorious thief, the Cat, whom he has vowed to capture). The sweet list song, about all the things that his beloved means to him, is obviously inspired by "My Favorite Things" from The Sound of Music, but I actually like this one better, especially for the mention of "the automobile" as a thing of wonder and beauty (the show is set near the end of the 19th century) and the line about " Marbles, the clear ones." Mr. Levin, you should've written more musicals.

She's roses, she's snowflakes, she's barrels of apples,
And ice cream and velvet and bells when they ring.
She's birthdays and New Year's, the night before Christmas,
The last day of school and the first day of spring.
Other girls, other girls borrow and buy
Cosmetics and feathers and fur.
Other girls, other girls hopelessly try
To change from themselves into her.
She's bluebirds and baseball and hitting a long one,
And laughing and dreaming and Central Park Lake.
She's marbles (the clear ones) and milk when you're thirsty,
She's five kinds of candy and six kinds of cake.
Other girls, other girls, ain't it a shame,
They're seaweed and splinters and glue.
Other girls, other girls, no one's to blame,
Pray God the poor creatures pull through.
She's all of the stars and the moon when it's rising,
And music and peace and the automobile.
And how can I live till the next time I see her?
She touched me right here, and she's really real.

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