Katie Melua is most pleasing on the eardrums

This song plays on cable a lot when Betty is at work (this is the job at which Betty sits a lot and watches cable, readers understand). It is reminiscent of C. S. Lewis’s poetry, in the following way: on first hearing, it struck Betty as being cerebral and poncy to the point of awkwardness. This impression was quite wrong. On repeated listenings, just as it is when one repeatedly reads one of Lewis’s poems — “Love’s as Warm as Tears”, let’s say, or the devastatingly lovely “Footnote to All Prayers” — the piece is revealed to be strikingly simple, sufficiently but not ostentatiously complex, beautifully shaped: and integrated, shaped by its own structure, not decorated or embellished. The best words in the best order, as another poet used to say, and he was right.

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