Tonight's the night! A Ned Rorem Celebration!
NYC is giving a five-hour-long broadcast of Ned's music, along with interviews, from Midnight to 5 AM on the evening of April 24-25. Be sure to tune in! Sarah Fishko's excellent hourlong interview with Ned on NPR is now available online.
"A priceless bird hides hardly fluttering in the cage of all our chests, a bird we are not allowed to see until the moment it decides to leave us and fly away forever. How could we have known it was starving inasmuch as we ignored its existence? So as not to become tiresome to others, I oblige them to fall in love with me."
"The entire sun belongs to that lizard stretched beneath it there."
"The poet always knows where he is going though he doesn't always know he knows. He works in showing what he didn't know he knew."
"Unfortunately I can't get it up for people with money. I'm as ashamed of using the key of C as of biting my fingernails or liking cake. For this is self- indulgence and the easiest way out. I am vaguely hysterical and frightfully calm; I have kissed my own lips (No, my own lips have kissed me.)"
"Order is the acceptance of incompatibility. Or: marriage is chaos accepted."
"What if I now were to say (to confess!) that this whole diary's been a hoax, a red herring, a fiction to make myself interesting! Would (could ) it, for that, be a hoax? Are my lies lies, and therefore the truth? Could I even know the answer? Do I? You'll never know!"
"Another gorgeous torture: lack of privacy. To be forever naked and alone within an illuminated plate-glass cell surrounded by an audience rotating 24 hours a day. But (not unironically) you are permitted any behavior.."
"A writer needn't go out and live , but stay home and invent, crying himself to sleep occasionally."
"The child says: when I grow up the important part will begin. As a grown-up he says: those first lost years were the important part."
Ned Rorem, from "The Paris Diary" (Braziller, 1967)