Vincent ( Starry Starry Night )

 

 

“Van Gogh's night sky is a field of roiling energy. Below the exploding stars, the village is a place of quiet order. Connecting earth and sky is the flame like cypress, a tree traditionally associated with graveyards and mourning. But death was not ominous for van Gogh. Looking at the stars always makes me dream, he said, Why, I ask myself, shouldn't the shining dots of the sky be as accessible as the black dots on the map of France? Just as we take the train to get to Tarascon or Rouen, we take death to reach a star.

 

The artist wrote of his experience to his brother Theo: This morning I saw the country from my window a long time before sunrise, with nothing but the morning star, which looked very big. This morning star, or Venus, may be the large white star just left of center in The Starry Night. The hamlet, on the other hand, is invented, and the church spire evokes van Gogh's native land, the Netherlands…”

 

 

~ The Museum of Modern Art ( MoMA.org )

 

 

 

Vincent (Starry Starry Night)

By Don McLean

 

 

 

Starry starry night, paint your palette blue and grey
Look out on a summer's day

With eyes that know the darkness in my soul
Shadows on the hills, sketch the trees and the daffodils
Catch the breeze and the winter chills,

In colors on the snowy linen land

Now I understand what you tried to say to me
How you suffered for you sanity

How you tried to set them free
They would not listen they did not know how

Perhaps they'll listen now

Starry starry night, flaming flowers that brightly blaze
Swirling clouds in violet haze

Reflect in Vincent's eyes of china blue
Colors changing hue, morning fields of amber grain
Weathered faces lined in pain

Are soothed beneath the artist's loving hand

Chorus:
For they could not love you, but still your love was true
And when no hope was left in sight

On that starry starry night
You took your life as lovers often do,
But I could have told you, Vincent,
This world was never meant for one as beautiful as you

Starry, starry night, portraits hung in empty halls
Frameless heads on nameless walls

With eyes that watch the world and can't forget
Like the stranger that you've met

The ragged man in ragged clothes
The silver thorn of bloody rose

Lie crushed and broken on the virgin snow

Now I think I know what you tried to say to me
How you suffered for you sanity

How you tried to set them free
They would not listen they're not listening still
Perhaps they never will.

 

 

1971, Don McLean

 

 

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