Lyrics – 7. Glitter and Be Gay

Leonard Bernstein / Richard Wilbur
The Amberson Group Inc. / Boosey and Hawkes, Inc. (ASCAP)

Glitter and be gay
That’s the part I play
Here I am in Paris, France
Forced to bend my soul
To a sordid role
Victimized by bitter
Bitter circumstance

Alas for me
Had I remained beside my lady mother
My virture had remained unstained
Until my maiden hand was gained
By some grand duke…or other.

Ah, t’was not to be
Harsh necessity
Brought me to this guilded cage
Born to higher things
Here I droop my wings
Singing of the sorrow
Nothing can assuage

And yet, of course, I rather like to revel
I have no strong objection to champagne
My wardrobe is expensive as the devil, ah ha!
Perhaps it is ignoble to complain

Enough! Enough!
Of being basely tearful
I’ll show my noble stuff
By being bright and cheerful
ha ha ha ha ha ha ha etc.

Pearls and ruby rings
Ah, how can worldly things
Take the place of honor lost
Can they compensate
For my fallen state
Purchased as they were at such an awful cost
Bracelets! Lavaliers!
Can they dry my tears
Can they blind my eyes to shame
Can the brightest brooch
Shield me from reproach
Can the purest diamond
Purify my name?

And yet, of course, these trinkets are endearing, ah ha
I’m also glad my sapphire is a star
I rather like a 20 carat earring
If I’m not pure, at least my jewels are

Enough enough
I’ll take their diamond necklace
And show my noble stuff
By being GAY and reckless
Ah ha ah hah…
ha ha ha ha ha ha etc.

Observe how bravely I conceal
the dreadful dreadful
Shame I feel
ah ha ha ha haha
aha ha ha HAAAAAAAAA
ha ha ha ha