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« Thanksgiving and Black Friday [by Jennifer Michael Hecht] | Main | "Having Been Turned Down (The World's Leaders Don't Want to Come to Dinner)" [by Laura Cronk] »

November 26, 2008


I love mondegreens and have followed them forever, it seems. I do think the mishearings are psychologically revealing, if not deep. I had a young (19) coworker many years ago who heard the lyrics of "There's a Party in My Pants" (which a local radio station would play every Friday) as "There's a Party at My Parent's." When my sister was learning to drive, the Beatles "Paperback Writer" was "Take the last right turn." And a man I know thought the Bananarama "I'm Your Venus," was "I'm Your Penis" (I thought it was "I'm Your Fetus") and that "Mask of Play" (What Kind of Fool Am I?) was "Mass Souffle." These crack me up! Stacey

One more: Remember 'Til Tuesday's "Voices Carry"? I was camping in the mountains with a friend and we were singing that song. Instead of "Hush hush, keep it down now, voices carry" she sang the last two words as "it's so scary." Not too much of a stretch but we were camping and it was scary. sdh

Re: "I'm Your Fetus" -- there's a song by Elton John on the "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" LP called "Grey Seal," the lyrics of which go: "if the phoenix bird can fly then so can I." Well, it goes without saying what I thought he was saying. And I put it in a poem!

I always heard Jimi Hendix's "'scuse me while I kkiss the sky" as "'scuse me while I kiss this guy."

I like to refer to this phenomenom as "Interpretive Hearing."

"'Scuse me while I kiss this guy" — Hendrix would actually sing those words occasionally, I heard (or misheard?).

"Interpretive hearing" -- I LURVE that!!!!

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"Lively and affectionate" Publishers Weekly


I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman


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