To change

I want to soar high, right into the sky.

To grow a pair of wings, bright and bold.

To be free,

To be colourful,

To be different.

 

I want to change who I am. But I struggle.

To feel trapped in an indescribable way,

To feel suffocated,

Like a bird trapped in a cage,

Dreaming of soaring free, high in that sky.

 

To feel free and have no charge of action or consequence.

To feel no responsibility, to feel a change. To feel free.

I want to soar high, right into the sky,

Because now I am ready. Ready to change.

 

I want to see the blue sky, the fluffy white clouds,

The forest of green, the blue ocean, the white sands.

I want to see the city, the town, the countryside.

To fly high over an ocean, a continent, a country.

To see the stars on a crystal clear night,

With no lights to pollute my air.

The air I breathe,

For one day this will all be gone.

 

It will be gone and I will still be here.

I will no longer want to fly high in the sky,

For then all I will see is ocean and a lot less land.

The world will be warmer.

But we will be cooler.

 

For now it is not real, but purely a dream.

But soon it will be real and a nightmare for all.

So right now all I want to do is to fly high into the sky and see,

See the world we live in right now,

Before it is all gone to mud and dust.

 

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Literature, film and adaptations

In this post we will be looking at Wuthering Heights, the only novel from Emily Bronte. It was published under the pseudonym of Ellis Bell in 1847. Emily died the following year.

I will state that I have not read the novel, but I have read extracts and seen a couple of versions of Wuthering Heights. For me it is a gothic horror and in my opinion darker and wilder then her sister’s novel of Jane Eyre.

Today it is seen as a classic in English Literature, but back then it was criticised heavily as it challenged Victorian social norms and values. In my opinion if Emily had been alive and the success and critique Wuthering Heights received, I think there would have been a wide catalogue of gothic horror novels from this Bronte sister.

In researching this novel I found there have been many works created, adapted and inspired by this gothic horror. I first watched Wuthering Heights as a TV mini series with Tom Hardy as Heathcliff. I enjoyed this very much, with the drama and tense nature between the characters of Heathcliff and Cathy. Ever more recently as part of this series I watched the 1992 film with Ralph Fiennes as Heathcliff and the film made me cry, it was that good.

For me I cannot say anything negative about the adaptations I have seen. In fact I found them very moving, inspiring and entertaining.

I find the character relationship of Heathcliff and Cathy a fascinating one. The obsession of love, cruelty, hardness and irony of their story is timeless, like many of the classical novels they are timeless. As the themes they address are universal no matter where in the world or what time of age it is either because of the timeless nature. A story based on the moors that correlates to the scenery of a dark, vast, turbulent nature in a dark and turbulent story.

I like the full circle of the ending where the daughter of Cathy and the son of Hindley end up together. The irony is that Hindley was brought up in the same manner as Heathcliff, as Heathcliff did to Hareton, what Hareton father Hindley did to him. A twist of revenge, that ended up as a bond between the Heathcliff and Hareton.

The importance I found from the ending is the profound symbolism of a continuing legacy of love in the extremities. Catherine and Hareton saw hope in despair, where Cathy and Heathcliff only saw misery.

Also I found that Heathcliff was the child who was the outsider that brought an other worldliness to the family. In the end the cousins whose parents were siblings ended up together and the equilibrium was once again brought before Heathcliff entered into the Earnshaw family.

I found the adaptations compelling, believable, passionate and rather dark, in essence for the gothic horror style. It is a novel that always inspires from the different adaptations to Kate Bush’s song Wuthering Heights. A novel that helps create in many different ways.

I just wonder what Emily Bronte would have thought of it all?

Lest we forget

We always remember the eleventh of November,

Where poppies bloom in fields a blown and

On our shirts to show, that we care and always will.

For the legions of men who bleed, who never came home.

To caring family and friends, who will never see them again.

 

For the missing, the homeless, the nameless to,

You will be remembered and honoured proudly through,

The stories told, the medals shown. Teaching a new generation!

Of our ancestors sown into the spirit of history,

When there was a time for war to fight for peace.

We will remember

Forever more.

 

For my great-grandfather and cousin twice removed.

For the Somme,

For Passchendaele,

For Ypres.

For France, for Germany, for Great Britain to.

We remember the lives they all gave,

For poppy, cornflower and forget me not, oh please.

A flower is a symbol of the fields we leave,

The world we tried to save,

Eventually we did, but we were not here to say we did.

We changed the world, till the second world war.

We pray for peace and never for war.

 

For I am grateful

My kidney is 12 today,

Only 12 years in me.

It belonged to someone else

Older than me.

 

I am ever so grateful,

For I feel someone thought of me.

When signing a form

To guarantee,

That someone should live

When they should die.

I will ever be grateful,

As their memory will never die.

 

A faceless face.

A nameless name.

Someone alone,

Someone loved.

Someone who is anonymous,

But will always be known.

 

For the legacy they leave behind,

A gift, specific for me.

To let my life continue,

As normal as it can be.

 

With medication,

Day and night

Night and day.

Appointments

Needles and blood tests.

Results upon results,

A check-up is needed

To keep me on my toes,

To keep me healthy.

 

But all of that is a small price

To be here and alive.

To be normal and free to roam.

I am grateful not to be stuck

To a dialysis machine.

For there are many that are.

Waiting for months,

Waiting for years.

To know the truth of freedom

To see the world.

 

For I will always remember,

The reason to why I roam free.

For someone died and

They saved me.

For today is an anniversary

That is rather bittersweet.

 

For the strands of life and death

Are connected, entwined,

Interwoven forever they will be.

The legacy I will leave behind is the same

That was given to me.

So please remember and think about it please.

That the decision you give,

Should impact a life

However small it will be.

To save a life.

To love a stranger

Who I will never meet.

 

Literature, film and adaptations

This will be the first in a mini-series looking at different authors and how their works have become the most loved adaptations in film and television. In this series I will be looking at specific novels and how they are adapted and portrayed to an audience, it will be both complimentary and at times critical.

In this post I will be looking at the Bronte sisters and their works.

Currently I am reading Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte after seeing many varied adaptations of this novel, I decided it was about time I read it. I cannot put it down. Even though I know what happens, it is still the anticipation of reading the inner most thoughts and feelings of the characters which you don’t get in film or a TV series. Upon my research I noticed there were many versions of Jane Eyre and I have seen three of them.

Firstly I started an interest with the Bronte sisters and their works at high school when I read a short story by H. G. Wells The Red Room, which had extracts about the red room in Jane Eyre.

The first version I saw of Jane Eyre was the 2011 version with Michael Fassbender as Edward Fairfax Rochester. I did enjoy it when I saw it originally. Then I saw the 1997 film again I enjoyed this and finally the 2006 TV mini-series with Toby Stephens as Rochester and Ruth Wilson as Jane Eyre. The 2006 version I thoroughly enjoyed in many ways and could say is my favourite. This is especially based on the interaction and chemistry of the two actors, which gave it a dynamic that was entertaining and captured the characters accordingly. I have not seen the 1983 version with Timothy Dalton, but I have seen a few clips on YouTube of his portrayal and many see this as their favourite. I can see why as this is the closest to the novel. Being close to a novel is always a thumbs up with fans of any kind of novel being transformed into a drama piece.

After a while I think it is important to read the novel of a classical piece of literature which has been adapted so many times. Why? The reason is that the adaptations are all different and do not include characters which can be important to the story, even scenes are chopped, changed or erased completely. I will admit I was surprised at the notable differences once I started reading the book, in comparison to what I had watched. For me the importance of Bessie when Jane is a child with her Uncle Reed’s family and Miss Temple at Lowood school are highly undervalued. Both characters show a kindness and some endearment to Jane which not many adaptations have picked up on, maybe ever so slightly with Bessie meeting Jane to tell her that her aunt has asked for her as she is dying. However in the novel it is Bessie’s husband and the one time that Bessie and Jane did see each other again is when Jane is at Lowood as an 18-year-old.

Other scenes that have been completely left out apart from one or two is the gypsy scene where Rochester dresses up as a gypsy to antagonise and to draw out the women’s desires and views for his own piece of mind and satisfaction. This scene is vital for the reader as it indicates Rochester’s feelings towards Blanche Ingram and those towards Jane. We never hear what is said between gypsy Rochester and Ingram, which leaves many to the imagination and reading between the lines somewhat. As for a reader that is always brilliant when we get to work things out. The gypsy scene was done in the 1983 version, amazingly done by Timothy Dalton and also in the 2006 version, but instead of Rochester being the gypsy he pays a woman to do it instead, while he hides. Whether it is done in either of these ways, this is an important moment for the reader/viewer as they get to see Edward Rochester in another light altogether.

Out of the versions I have seen in comparison to the novel, in my opinion for me 2011 version is the worst to others I have actually seen. I can see the creativity of starting the film of a scene halfway through the novel, where Jane leaves Thornfield Hall after the non marriage. But if that was your first time seeing or learning about Jane Eyre it is very confusing. But I do applaud the direction it was trying to take. Also the chopping and merging of scenes gave it a mishmash and sometimes rushed feel. Unfortunately with the calibre of talent and the beautiful music and scenery it could have been a success. But for me it falls far from the mark.

My favourite in comparison to the novel would be the TV mini series, as it gave more time to be complex in story and character which probably gave more freedom for the actors. In comparison to the book it gave the essence of character which I thoroughly appreciated and was sorry that it ended as I could have watched more. For me where this succeeded where the other failed was it started chronologically. Also it didn’t merge scenes to the extent of the 2011 film. But this can really be explained by the time constraints of a film and TV series. For me the way the characters were played was spectacular, the difference in Rochester was that it saw a teasing, overtly sexual, worldly and confident Byronic hero. As well as the big difference in Rochester, Jane was a significant difference between the 2011 and 2006 version, as the 06 one gave a vibrant, playful and conflicting character to who she is and what she believes, where 2011 gave off a plain Jane. A plain Jane is definitely not my perception of Jane Eyre from the book.

One thing I find important about Jane Eyre is Charlotte originally published it under a pseudonym of Currer Bell. This is significant as women were expected to be a certain type in social circles, as well as only publishing certain material and Jane Eyre would not have been suitable for the writings of a demure woman. It is important to say that the book was a phenomenon until Currer Bell was identified as a woman and then it was shunned as something a woman should not write. It was not part of their social norm. In today’s world, this particular work of literature would have been celebrated and ironically it still is, with many screenwriters, directors and actors still rolling out a Jane Eyre product somewhere. The reason I specifically mention the social aspects of the publication of Jane Eyre is because this translates to the novel. For me this clash in social values of the time is what makes a film or series of Jane Eyre a success in my view.

In conclusion Jane Eyre is seen as a woman who is modern beyond her years of wanting to advertise and self-assured in an era where women were not seen socially as independent, but as a dependent on a good marriage rather than a career, which Jane strives on as a governess in being a teacher. It is a timeless classic of love, finding out who you are and standing up for what you believe in, even if it will cost you the happiness you wanted.

So which version is your favourite?

Next time I will be continuing the theme of the sisters by looking at Emily Bronte’s novel of Wuthering Heights.

 

Guy Fawkes

As the 5th November is approaching I decided to share the old English verse poem that relates to this. All I can ever remember is:

Remember, remember the 5th November. So here the poem is that celebrates the history and failure of the Gunpowder plot, that tried to blow up the Houses of Parliament when King James First attended parliament. Google it!

Remember, remember!
The fifth of November,
The Gunpowder treason and plot;
I know of no reason
Why the Gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot!
Guy Fawkes and his companions
Did the scheme contrive,
To blow the King and Parliament
All up alive.
Threescore barrels, laid below,
To prove old England’s overthrow.
But, by God’s providence, him they catch,
With a dark lantern, lighting a match!
A stick and a stake
For King James’s sake!
If you won’t give me one,
I’ll take two,
The better for me,
And the worse for you.
A rope, a rope, to hang the Pope,
A penn’orth of cheese to choke him,
A pint of beer to wash it down,
And a jolly good fire to burn him.
Holloa, boys! holloa, boys! make the bells ring!
Holloa, boys! holloa boys! God save the King!
Hip, hip, hooor-r-r-ray!

Halloween

All Hallows Eve

Full of fear and fright,

Of Scary ghosts and ghouls

Witches on broomsticks

Monsters under the bed.

 

Classic horrors of

Dracula and Frankenstein,

Gothic Horror.

Rocky Horror.

 

A howl under of a full moon,

A haunted house

Bumps in the night

Shadows in the light.

 

Sleep with one eye open.

Till the crack of dawn

For tonight the spirits are free,

On all Hallows Eve.