It’s midnight, and I’m too tired to write my last post right now. I told myself, “I’ll just do it later, in the morning.” Then I started singing “Later,” one of the songs from yesterday’s show, A Little Night Music, and thought it might tide you over until I can finish the final September Song.

OK, so the show opens with a trio of songs: “Now,” sung by Frederik as he contemplates the best way to seduce his virginal wife; “Later,” sung by Frederik’s sexually repressed (and perpetually depressed) son Henrik, the divinity student; and “Soon,” sung by Anne, the young wife, as she promises that it won’t be too much longer before she gives herself completely.

This is “Later.” Its chief accompaniment is a lugubrious cello, playing in counterpoint.

Later. . .
When is later?
All you ever hear is “Later, Henrik, Henrik, later.”
“Yes, we know, Henrik,
Oh, Henrik,
Everyone agrees, Henrik,
Please, Henrik!”
You have a thought you’re fairly bursting with,
A personal discovery or problem, and it’s:
“What’s your rush, Henrik?
Shush, Henrik!
Goodness, how you gush, Henrik!
Hush, Henrik!”
You murmur:
“I only—
It’s just that—”
“For God’s sake, later, Henrik!”

“Henrik. . .
Who is Henrik?
Oh, that lawyer’s son, the one who mumbles.
Short and boring,
Yes, he’s hardly worth ignoring,
And who cares if he’s all dammed—”
I beg your pardon—
“Up inside?”
As I’ve often stated,
It’s intolerable being tolerated.
“Reassure Henrik,
Poor Henrik.
Henrik, you’ll endure
Being pure, Henrik.”
Though I’ve been born, I’ve never been!
How can I wait around for later?
I’ll be ninety on my deathbead
And the late, or, rather, later, Henrik Egerman.
Doesn’t anything begin?

See you later.


~ by Craig R. Smith on 30 September 2007.

2 Responses to “Later”

  1. Oh, but today, yes?

  2. Yes. Sometime this afternoon, I expect.

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