Monday, August 29, 2011

Monday's Poetry: "White Rabbit"

by Pa Rock
Poetry Appreciator

I have had "White Rabbit" rattling around my head ever since watching the Johnny Depp version of Alice in Wonderland a few weeks ago.  Grace Slick wrote this whimsical song, which is based ever so cleverly on characters and happenings from Lewis Carroll's equally whimsical Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, in 1966 shortly before joining Jefferson Airplane as the lead singer.  Her version (is there any other?) is one of the most powerful anthems of the sixties, literally painting a picture of the times through borrowed images crafted by Carroll a century earlier.

And yes, it does sound as though it may be describing drug usage, but that was a significant aspect of that era - the era that produced Grace Slick and Jefferson Airplane.  "White Rabbiot" is a poetic insight into sixties as filtered through the magical lenses of Lewis Carroll and Grace Slick.

Enjoy it - I always do!

White Rabbit
by Grace Slick

One pill makes you larger
And one pill makes you small
And the ones that mother gives you
Don't do anything at all

Go ask Alice
When she's ten feet tall

And if you go chasing rabbits
And you know you're going to fall
Tell them a hookah smoking caterpillar
Has given you the call

Call Alice
When she was just small

When the men on the chessboard
Get up and tell you where to go
And you've just had some kind of mushroom
And your mind is moving low

Go ask Alice
I think she'll know

When logic and proportion
Have fallen sloppy dead
And the White Knight is talking backwards
And the Red Queen's "off with her head!"

Remember what the dormouse said:
"Feed your head, feed your head, feed your head" 

No comments: