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Posted by Martin Walker on October 17, 2014, 10:25 am
I really don't think "Shaffer would have us believe" anything, as Stuart Sillitoe would perhaps not quite seriously have us believe, certainly not the story he borrowed from Pushkin's Mozart and Salieri, which had previously been used by Rimsky Korsakov for the libretto of his eponymous opera (1830), for the scenario of a silent film in 1914 and by the mordantly witty poem of the same title by one of the most underrated 20th century poets, John Heath-Stubbs, whose work is full of poems on musical subjects. This message might actually be a shameless but disinterested plug for that wonderful writer's work, in my firm belief that "music and sweet poetry agree". And the truest poetry is the most feigning, something that our literalistic times often ignore.
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