“So turtles pair…”

Tito kindly suggested that Mayumi & I commemorate our marriage this past April here, with our friends in/on the Icebox. Reprinted below is the text we chose to place on the back of the program for our wedding ceremony, taken from Shakespeare’s late play “The Winter’s Tale,” together with a photograph of the event in medias res.

FLORIZEL:   I think you have
As little skill to fear as I have purpose
To put you to’t. But come; our dance, I pray:
Your hand, my Perdita: so turtles pair,
That never mean to part.

PERDITA: I’ll swear for ’em.

フロリゼル:  こわがる理由が君にはあるまい、
こわがらすつもりなど僕にはないのだから。
それより、さあ踊ろうじゃないか、いいだろう。
君の手をパーディタ。決して離れようとはしない
キジバトのように、ひとつになって踊ろう。

パーディタ:  私もキジバトの誠実さには負けはしません。
mark-mayumi

N.B.: In the scene here quoted, Florizel proposes to marry Perdita. In English, we speak of “taking a woman’s hand” in marriage, though Florizel takes it also for a dance. “Turtles” are turtle-doves, which, in English poetry, are emblems of fidelity in love, because they pair for life. (Mark makes bold to add, with a wink––and for those who know Mayumi well––that in “The Winter’s Tale” Perdita, though she remains unaware of it until the last act, is, in fact, a princess. Incidentally, neither one of us ever dances.)

2 Responses to ““So turtles pair…””

  1. All who know you both were so glad – especially in this year of loss for Hailstone – when they heard your joyful news! There will be some who haven’t yet heard it, so thanks for bothering to record something here — and with that little bit of Shakespeare, too. A close relative of the turtle dove in Europe is the kijibato (yamabato) of Japan. One of the first haiqua I ever wrote in Japan was this, from Yamanashi in 1974:

    Something tells me
    This is home …
    Perhaps the mountain pigeon
    Cooing in the pines.

  2. Richard Donovan Says:

    I, a keen birdwatcher, was privy to much billing and cooing at the communal nesting after the nuptials. And what a view of the city from the roost!

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