Background Notes for Moonlight and the Macheïde
We’re tempting at getting the plug pulled on us again. He doesn’t like being written about. (And we’ve been reprimanded for writing about her even when we weren’t.)
Blame Sara again. Like so many others we write here these days in collaboration, this spins off notes and early drafts she left for us. Let him frown at what Sara saw, but her song will still carry on, whether in her own solo pieces or in these she asked us to join her in writing.
The macheïde — “son of battle,” — is a phoenix, with a bit of a twist. He repeatedly dies in battle, to be reborn new and better, cleansed of imperfection by the experience of death and rebirth, returning yet again to the war. Moonlight is the life force of the mother in all her mystery and glory. In their experience of death and rebirth, they are locked in eternal dance, an embrace that no magic can break.
The form emerged from some experiments Sara was working with in her own drafts. She wanted the rhyme and meter to act like a reflection of the cycles of death and rebirth, like the rippled mirror of moonlight on a lake.
There’s much more that could be said, since aside from its own independent truth in the myth, this does have a personal reality behind it. None of that needs to be known in order to understand what we mean to say. Not that there’s anything needing hidden — we do not believe in deception, even as a poetic device. Just, although there’s more that could be said, there’s nothing more that must be said.
— Maggie, for Sheila, with thanks to Sara