I was listening to Marta Gómez, a pop version of this Lorca poem. The music is upbeat and happy, unlike the poem itself. I laughed out loud at the discrepancy. If you didn't know Spanish, you would think she was singing a happy lyric.
A theory of kitsch popped into my head, nothing too original but an extension of my earlier ideas. I've been thinking about this since the 1990s, at least. The word kitsch is in the title of my first Lorca book.
We take a work of art associated with high culture. Kitsch is not mass culture itself, but a degradation of high culture.
The next step is a fossilization into an easily recognizable and reproducible stereotype.
Now the stage is set for popularization.
Not all popularizations are kitschy. We know when they are because they somehow forget to engage with the work itself. The problem is not even raised. It's as though any melody could be used for any poem. WTF!