Vera Lynn – Yours

  • Post author:

Commitment, dedication, promises. The song was originally written by the Cuban composer Gonzalo Roig in 1911, with lyrics written by him and his wife Blanca Becerra. Especially the Spanish version has become a standard, but even then it took about 20 years. I’ve always loved this version by Vera Lynn recorded, like most of her hits, during WW2.

Previously I wrote about the Momus song Rhetoric which has similar statements, trying to say “I will be eternally yours”, but phrasing it in such a way as if there was a condition in which love might end. Additionally there’s the idea that two people might be born to be with each other, a belief in destiny.

It is not important whether such a thing as destiny is real, or even could be. The emotion alone matters, and how love is such a strong impulse that it changes our thoughts, beliefs, our very being. It makes past disappointments insignificant, the present becomes fuzzy, permanent intoxication upon just seeing the beloved, and the future is suddenly certain, as if the universe itself had decided that this love must happen. Sure, one may think about it scientifically as a cocktail of hormones and the body trying to find a suitable mate, but what I’m interested in is the stuff of poems and paintings: the human experience, as unrealistic as it might be, as fanciful and inventive.

It is in the glory of the stars, in the birdsong, in the nights full of music, and when there is no music around, the notes still keep ringing. We hear them breathing together, sitting opposite each other drinking tea, or holding each other until the morning.

I have a fond memory of singing this song on a warm night while walking through some industrial park somewhere in New Zealand. “Here or on far distant shores”. I was not in a relationship at the time, but just thinking of love that transcends time and space is comforting, and how the thoughts may be with the beloved no matter what the distance is. There is time to be present, to focus completely on what is at hand. But can poets ever really do that, just to describe what is in front of us? Well, in a way. An important part of writing is observing things closely, being really present. But then to turn it into actual poetry or stories one has to sit down and remember, twist it through some viewpoint to make it interesting. In that way writing is also about displacement, thinking about things that are not here, things that have never been. Yet what a wonder it is, to be in love and to be relieved of the self-imposed duty to think of metaphors, and instead to reflect on the world with another soul, not just reflect images of beauty I happen to find in nature or in the city.