Two “Adaptations” of Wuthering Heights

Kate Bush music video (click picture for Youtube video)

Lyrics:
Out on the winding, windy moors
We’d roll and fall in green
You had a temper, like my jealousy
Too hot, too greedy
How could you leave me?
When I needed to possess you?
I hated you, I loved you too

Bad dreams in the night
They told me I was going to lose the fight
Leave behind my wuthering, wuthering
Wuthering Heights

(Chorus x2) Heathcliff, it’s me, Cathy, I’ve come home
I’m so cold, let me in-a-your window

Ooh it gets dark, it gets lonely
On the other side from you
I pine a lot, I find the lot
Falls through without you
I’m coming back love, cruel Heathcliff
My one dream, my only master

Too long I roam in the night
I’m coming back to his side to put it right
I’m coming home to wuthering, wuthering,
Wuthering Heights

(Chorus x2) Heathcliff, it’s me, Cathy, I’ve come home
I’m so cold, let me in-a-your window

Oh let me have it, let me grab your soul away
Oh let me have it, let me grab your soul away
You know it’s me, Cathy

(Chorus x3) Heathcliff, it’s me, Cathy, I’ve come home
I’m so cold, let me in-a-your window

Here’s what Wikipedia claims:

Written by Bush when she was 18, the song is based on the novel of the same name. Kate Bush was inspired to write the song by the last ten minutes of the 1970 film version of Wuthering Heights.[2] She then read the book and discovered that she shared her birthday (30 July) with Emily Brontë. Bush reportedly wrote the song, for her album The Kick Inside, within the space of just a few hours late at night.

Lyrically, “Wuthering Heights” uses several quotations from Catherine Earnshaw, most notably in the chorus – “Let me in! I’m so cold!” – as well as in the verses, with Catherine’s confession to her servant of “bad dreams in the night.” It is sung from Catherine’s point of view, as she pleads at Heathcliff’s window to be allowed in. This romantic scene takes a sinister turn if one has read Chapter 3 of the original book, as Catherine is in fact a ghost, calling lovingly to Heathcliff from beyond the grave. Catherine’s “icy” ghost grabs the hand of the Narrator, Mr Lockwood, through the bedroom window, asking him to let her in, so she can be forgiven by her lover Heathcliff, and freed from her own personal purgatory.

Monty Python

Monty Python sketch (click picture for Youtube video)

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About Kevin L. Ferguson

Associate Professor of English and Director of Writing at Queens
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6 Responses to Two “Adaptations” of Wuthering Heights

  1. What a coincidence. One minute you are the bane of an entire class’ existence and the next you’re recognized as a national treasure. Go figure.
    Bush’s song really makes one contemplate the limits of adaptation, though. I could envision a Wuthering Heights version of the board game Clue, only instead of one giant mansion, the board would consist of two mansions, with the moors between them. The winner of the game would graced with the sound of Bush’s song and would then be inclined to beat him/herself over the head with a candlestick.
    Anyway, congratulations Kate Bush.

  2. I see this as the Queen confirming my excellent taste in music videos.

  3. I had this song stuck in my head for my next class, so I downloaded it when I went home. I also showed this video and the “White Dress” version to my sister.

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