Bad Sex in Fiction award voor Shakespeare?

Vroege Mid­deleeuwen:
Enig overge­bleven frag­ment uit oerver­sie Romeo & Juli­et => Rodewi­jn & Ani­ta
Pop­u­laire raamvertelling die gewoon­lijk in de late uurt­jes werd voorge­dra­gen:

Hé meis­je!, zeg meis­je, ben je al een beet­je nat
rit­siepie rit­siepa rit­siepoe
Een harde lul die is gemaakt om mee te pom­pen
falderie, faldera

Shake­speare is onder de indruk ger­aakt van de poëtis­che schoonheid en tragiek in het Rodewijk & Ani­ta ver­haal, en maakt een eerste engelse ver­sie van Romeo & Juli­et:

Here is the sto­ry of a real cool dude. Romeo’s his label, and he sho’ ain’t crude.
He went to a par­ty where he wasn’t sup­posed to. He fell for a gal that he danced real close to.
Juli­et, Juli­et, yeah man.
The priest and the nurse, they got the two togeth­er. They built ‘em a nest, like birds of a feath­er.
The prob­lem was the old man and old lady didn’t want Romeo to be her matey.
Capulet, Mon­tague, no man.
So he got in a fight with a real rough cat He killed him dead, and that was that.
The trou­ble was the dude was Juliet’s kin, And we all know blood’s thick­er than skin.
Tybalt, Tybalt, po’ man.
The priest and the nurse hatched ‘em a plan to fool Verona; Julie takes a pill, and they think she’s a goner.
The prob­lem was Romeo’s a lon­er. He got kicked out­ta town by the dudes of Verona.
Romeo, Romeo, where you be? Yo, Man­tua by the sea.
He gets a mes­sage the wrong way straight. He rides to Verona to see his mate.
When he arrives, he thinks he’s late; So he slays the French­man and opens the gate.
Paris, Paris, po’ man.
He sees his chick tak­ing a nap; He gets real fonky and starts to rap.
He takes out the poi­son and drinks it real quick; He ends his life to be with his chick.
Romeo, Romeo, po’ man.
The priest comes in way too late, He sees all the blood near the gate.
Julie yawns and she sits up straight; She spies the priest and asks for her mate,
“Romeo, Romeo, where you be?”
“Lord, Child, can’t you see? Your dude is dead! No mo’ mis­ter! I’ll take you away and make you a sis­ter!”
Juli­et, Juli­et, po’ gal.
She sends him away. She says she won’t go. She picks up the cup and throws it on the flo’.
She gives her man a long­ing kiss. She grabs his knife and dies in bliss.
Juli­et, Juli­et, po’ gal.
Now the Mon­tagues and Capulets, they made their peace; They raised up some stat­ues to show their grief.
For nev­er was a sto­ry of more woe Than this one here of Juli­et and Romeo.

Shake­speare besluit de eerste ver­sie te bew­erken nadat hij er niet in slaagt om in de top-10 charts van de hit­pa­rade te komen. Hij gooit het over een andere boeg om een grotere doel­groep te bereiken. Het nu vol­gende frag­ment is exem­plar­isch:

Romeo comes over and push­es me gen­tly back down on the fake fur. I try to rise up to kiss him – it’s so love­ly, the kiss­ing – but he push­es me down, again. He likes to kiss me all over before he does any­thing else. He starts with my eyes, and plants a ten­der kiss on each lid.
… He moves on to my ears, a kiss that makes my nip­ples stand erect, and me emit lit­tle moans that drown out to my own ears the loud, dis­tract­ing sound of Cum­ber­batch swip­ing dock leaves and tear­ing net­tles and long grass­es very close to the rick­ety stoop. Romeo’s hands are caress­ing my breasts, now, and I am allowed to kiss him back, but not for long, for he breaks off, to give each breast the atten­tion it deserves. As he nib­bles and pulls with his mouth, his hands find my bush, and with light fin­gers he flut­ters about there, as if he is a moth caught inside a lamp­shade.
Almost scream­ing after five ago­niz­ing­ly plea­sur­able min­utes, I make a grab, to put him, now angri­ly slap­ping against both our bel­lies, inside, but he holds both by arms down, and puts his tongue to my core, like a cat lap­ping up a dish of cream so as not to miss a sin­gle drop. I find myself grip­ping his ears and tug­ging at the locks curl­ing over them, beside myself, and a strange ani­mal noise escapes from me as the mount­ing, thun­der­ing crescen­do over­takes me.

Na een span­nende eind­stri­jd wint Shake­speare the Bad Sex Fic­tion award met boven­staande scène. Dit is aan­lei­d­ing voor hem om voor een laat­ste keer essen­tiële onderde­len te her­schri­jven.

Defin­i­tieve pub­li­catie van Romeo & Juli­et:

Act 1, Scene 5

If I pro­fane with my unwor­thi­est hand
This holy shrine, the gen­tle sin is this:
My lips, two blush­ing pil­grims, ready stand
To smooth that rough touch with a ten­der kiss.
Good pil­grim, you do wrong your hand too much,
Which man­ner­ly devo­tion shows in this;
For saints have hands that pil­grims’ hands do touch,
And palm to palm is holy palmers’ kiss.
Have not saints lips, and holy palmers too?
Ay, pil­grim, lips that they must use in prayer.
O, then, dear saint, let lips do what hands do;
They pray — grant thou, lest faith turn to despair.
Saints do not move, though grant for prayers’ sake.
Then move not, while my prayer’s effect I take.
[Kiss­es her.]
Thus from my lips, by yours, my sin is purged.
Then have my lips the sin that they have took.
Sin from thy lips? O tres­pass sweet­ly urged!
Give me my sin again.
[Kiss­es her.]
You kiss by th’ book.

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Geïn­spireerd door Rachel John­son, die dit jaar (2008) de Bad Sex in Fic­tion Award heeft gewon­nen. Het is haar win­nende stuk­je tekst dat hier­boven is gebruikt.

John Updike heeft trouwens een eervolle ver­meld­ing voor z’n gehele oeu­vre gekre­gen.

Voor de volledigheid ver­meld ik nog dat Romeo’s Rap geschreven is door Pat Alvara­do en de oerver­sie van Rodewi­jn & Ani­ta is natu­urlijk herken­baar als een echte Hans Teeuwen tekst.

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