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Wildisms (1 Viewer)

Pawn

Patron
Favourite Wilde quotes? Thoughts on his children's stories? His poetry? His novels?

Hit me baby (one more time).
 

Beatrice Boyle

Senior Member
Favorite lines from the "Ballad of Reading Gaol".

(Not necessarily in order.)

He did not wear his scarlet coat
For blood and wine are red
And blood and wine were on his hands
When they found him with the dead
The poor dead woman whom he loved
And murdered in her bed
~
Yet each man kills the thing he loves
By each let this be heard
Some do it with a bitter look
Some with a flattering word
The coward does it with a kiss
The brave man with a sword
~
This too I know - and wise it were
If each could know the same
That every prison that men build
Is built with bricks of shame
And bound with bars lest Christ should see
How men their brothers maim
~
It is sweet to dance to violins
When Love and Life are fair
To dance to flutes, to dance to lutes
Is delicate and rare
But it is not sweet with nimble feet
To dance upon the air!
~

"In this world there are only two tragedies, one is not getting what you want, the other is getting it!" Oscar Wilde.

Discuss :?:
 

LensmanZ313

Senior Member
"Religions die when they are proven to be true. Science is the record of dead religions."

"High hopes were once formed of democracy; but democracy means simply the bludgeoning of the people by the people for the people."
 

Pawn

Patron
I can recite most of that poem by heart, Bea. It's truly brilliant.

Yet each man kills the thing he loves
By each let this be heard...


The 'tragedies' quotation has always been one of my favourites, as well. It well sums up the paradox of desire.
 

Wyndstar

Senior Member
Wilde

Yet each man kills the thing he loves
By each let this be heard
Some do it with a bitter look
Some with a flattering word
The coward does it with a kiss
The brave man with a sword

I remember this line. It was one of the first I ever heard without hearing the whole thing. It was the line I considered when I made the hardest choice I ever made that I woudn't do such a thing myself.

As time goes by and I read this poem in its entirety, I must confess that it is with sadness that I see it more and more an allegory for modern life.

On the utterly shallow side, I always thought that aesthetically, Mr. Wilde was rather attractive a man.

Lady Boyle, did you want to discuss that last line of yours about getting what you want?
 

Beatrice Boyle

Senior Member
Sir Wyndstar...The discuss icon was denoting whether or not the poem, or Wilde himself was up for discussion, or if anyone had anything to add to this particular thread.

As for Wilde's quote, there is an old irish probverb my mother used to quote...be careful what you pray for...you MAY get it!! :wink:

Bea
 

Pawn

Patron
Well, Wilde's work certainly becomes more interesting when considered within the context of his life. For a wit of Wilde's calibre to be brought to the point where he was able to write something like De Profundis is quite remarkable.
 

Wyndstar

Senior Member
Wilde

Sir Wyndstar...The discuss icon was denoting whether or not the poem, or Wilde himself was up for discussion, or if anyone had anything to add to this particular thread.

Actually, when I'm addressed, its either "Hey momma" , "Yo wench" or "Sarge" but Sir is a nice varient. I'm not picky these days...

Well, Wilde's work certainly becomes more interesting when considered within the context of his life. For a wit of Wilde's calibre to be brought to the point where he was able to write something like De Profundis is quite remarkable.

He spent 18 months in jail for a passion (homosexual or not---I don't agree that passion can only be for a physical contact) that was considered 'indecent' by today's enlightened standards. After suffering in substandard conditions, he had time for introspection---I'd have been surprised if nothing came of it. And I was saddened a small bit at how he felt about Desire at the end...

Desire at the end was a malady, a madness or both...

As if something died within him in the end---innocence it seems. Or illusion, depending on your point of view.
 

Beatrice Boyle

Senior Member
I'm not surprised...since that "desire" ruined his life!

On the other hand his "passion" physical or otherwise, fueled his genious!

In today's world...I'm sure the emphasis would be totally on his work! (and he'd be raking in millions for movie/television etc for book rights!) :wink:
 

Wyndstar

Senior Member
Wilde

If there was a movie about his life, I haven't seen it---but it would be interesting to make one NOW, about his life based on the trials and the letters, and his passions in general. Maybe directed by Franco Zeffereli. Something rich and passionate and intellegent, to include his time in prison.

Movies of substance are few these days, drown in special effects and computer graphics. But as long as Wilde's writings lost nothing in the translation, I'd be happy to see them on the contemporary screen as well.
 

Beatrice Boyle

Senior Member
I seem to remember either a movie or a TV program that dealt with exactly that...can't remember which one...but I think it was a movie, some time ago!

I have a fondness for "Reading Goal" as it was one my husband's favorite poems. I can still see him spouting his favorite lines...with gestures...to my children, trying to enrich their knowledge of great literature, while they were in school! :)
 

Wyndstar

Senior Member
Wilde

Did it work? Their enrichment I mean?

By the age of 25, I had read everything Wilde had written that I could lay my hands on because as a child, my father made me watch 'Dorian Gray'. Sadly, I had forgotten a lot of since then because of---circumstances, but I remember him holding my hand before I got to see what the picture looked like. Its why I started reading Wilde (he used to wake us up in the middle of the night to scare my sister when the Phantom of the Opera showed his face too and then make us pizza).

I hadn't thought of that for a long time until you mentioned about your husband, Lady Boyle. Thank you very much for that.
 

Beatrice Boyle

Senior Member
That's so funny...That's what they used to call my husband...Dorian Gray..because he looked so youthful...had a full head of black hair...when all his peers were graying and bald! They used to ask to see his picture in the attic! :lol:

This would be an interesting topic...do you remember what turned you on to a particular work, character or author!

Thanks also for jogging my memory! :sunny:
 

WordBeast

Senior Member
Re: Wilde

Wyndstar said:
If there was a movie about his life, I haven't seen it---

There have been a number of films made about Wilde's life. The most recent, Wilde was made around five years ago, and stars Stephen Fry as Wilde, and Jude Law as Lord Alred Douglas. The movie is better than others I've seen about him. This one focuses mainly on Wilde's tempestuous relationship with Alfred Douglas, leading up to the trials and his imprisonment. I think that Fry did a fine job in portraying Wilde, as compared to two previous films, in which Wilde was played by Peter Finch and Robert Morley, respectively. Though they were good actors in their own right, I think they were badly miscast. A film version of The Picture Of Dorian Gray made in the late forties, is not bad and includes the screen debut of Angela Lansbury as the beautiful, tragic Sybil Vane.

Trying to pick my favourite Wilde quote, is like trying to pick my favourite flavour of ice cream. But here are a few I like:


(Wilde arriving in America, and being asked by a customs officer if he had anything to declare) "I have nothing to declare but my genius"

"I can stand brute force but brute reason is quite unbearable. It is like hitting below the intellect"

"A poet can survive anything but a misprint"

"Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing"
 

petrel}

Senior Member
"I suppose that I shall have to die beyond my means".
Oscar Wilde, upon being told the cost of an operation


"One is tempted to define man as a rational animal who always loses his temper when he is called upon to act in accordance with the dictates of reason."

Oscar Wilde, The Critic as Artist, part 2, 1891
 

Pawn

Patron
Allow me to pop in for a moment and register my disgust with filmic attempts at Wilde's life, notably the most recent. Stephen Fry, while perfectly good at what he does, which is present award shows, is an appaling actor. Never more so is this evident than in Wilde. I couldn't stand having one of my idols butchered on screen by an overweight ponce with less emotion than an apathetic cardboard box.

Let me throw my favourite Wilde quotation out, while I'm posting:

"Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative."
 

WordBeast

Senior Member
Pawn said:
I couldn't stand having one of my idols butchered on screen by an overweight ponce with less emotion than an apathetic cardboard box.

It's all relative, my dear Pawn. Next to Robert Morley's morbidly obese Wilde, Stephen Fry's Oscar is downright svelt. I grant you that Fry was not exactly the reincarnation of Wilde, but then who could be? Some acts are hard to follow.

As for the emotional lives of apathetic cardboard boxes, I'll have you know that in my youth I experienced a torrid love affair with an apathetic cardboard box! In truth, I must confess, as I look back, that I now view that sordid relationship as rather hollow. ;>
 

Pawn

Patron
Puns, puns! They get me every time.

Indeed, who could recreate Wilde? A good justification for not trying, I would say.
 

Wyndstar

Senior Member
Wilde

I've seen a good many try to recreate Wilde, merely believing they lacked the words, so living instead a life of passion...

I'm not good at puns, so I try to be profound instead.

If I were to do a decent movie on the life of Oscar Wilde, it certainly wouldn't be big budget, it would not have big stars, and I'm not sure I'd try to adapt it to what the every day smoe would understand. I am quite sure that Mr. Wilde isn't someone that COULD be understood in the context of the 'Just getting by numbed by tv and commercialism' populace. I heard a comment in a movie theatre not long ago from a group of complete strangers that they just 'can't be bothered by a movie that requires them to be emotionally involved'. Maybe that is the problem filmmakers have. Maybe they have to pander for profit's sake---too much.

Or maybe its just that decent writers are just such passionate critters, film is too shallow to capture them properly. In which case, I'll just have to settle for what I can gleen out of Mr. Wilde and others from their writings---as they probably intended.
 
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