I’ve been living in the U.S. for a few years now, and one Canadian holiday I really miss is Queen Victoria day. Or, “fireworks day,” as we used to call it when I was little. I think we were missing the point, though I bet Queen Victoria liked fireworks. Maybe.
In the U.S., we have Memorial Day instead. I’m not really sure what it’s about, but Victoria Day should be self-explanatory to any self-respecting Victorianist. Aside from the fact that it doesn’t fall on her real birthday almost ever in the interests of having a long weekend.
In honour of Victoria day and Neo-Victorian month on “The Floating Academy,” I thought I’d put up a verse from Leonard Cohen’s song “Queen Victoria,” which is both Canadian and Victorian. It goes:
Queen Victoria, my father and all his tobacco loved you
I love you too in all your forms
The slim and lovely virgin floating among German beer
The mean governess of the huge pink maps
The solitary mourner of a prince.
Cohen goes on to ask Victoria to punish his errant lover. I can see this.
We talk a lot about neo-Victorian novels, but less about neo-Victorian poetry, and even less about neo-Victorian songs. The only other pop song I can think of is the Kinks’ “Victoria.”And I’m not even sure if it counts as neo-Victorian just because it has a Victorian theme. Any other good examples of neo-Victorian songs out there? I’d love to listen to the mixed tape (err ipod shuffle) of Victorian-themed pop.