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A Passion Play

© Ian Anderson 1973


A Passion Play

"Do you still see me even here?"
The silver cord lies on the ground.
"And so I'm dead", the young man said
Over the hill, not a wish away.

My friends as one all stand aligned
Although their taxis came too late.
There was a rush along the Fulham Road.
There was a hush in the Passion Play.

Such a sense of glowing in the aftermath
Ripe with rich attainments all imagined
Sad misdeeds in disarray, the sore thumb screams aloud
Echoing out of the Passion Play.

All the old familiar choruses come crowding in a different key
Melodies decaying in sweet dissonance.
There was a rush along the Fulham Road
Into the ever-Passion Play.

And who comes here to wish me well?
A sweetly-scented angel fell.
She laid her head upon my disbelief
And bathed me with her ever-smile.

And with a howl across the sand
I go escorted by a band
Of gentlemen in leather bound
No one but someone to be found.

All along the icy wastes there are faces smiling in the gloom.
Roll up roll down, Feeling unwound? Step into the viewing room.
The cameras were all around, We've got you taped- you're in the Play.

Here's your I.D., ideal for identifying one and all.
Invest your life in the memory bank, ours the interest and we
thank you.
The ice-cream lady wet her drawers, to see you in the Passion Play.

Take the prize for instant pleasure
Captain of the cricket team
Public speaking in all weathers
A knighthood from a queen.
All your best friends telephones never cooled from the heat of
your hand.
From your hand.
There's a line in a front-page story- 13 horses that also-ran.
Also-ran.
Climb in your old umbrella, Does it have a nasty tear in the dome?
In the dome?
But the rain only gets in sometimes, and the sun never leaves you
alone.
You alone.
You alone.

Lover of the black and white- it's your first night.
The Passion Play goes all the way-spoils your insight.
Tell me how the baby's made, how the lady's laid
Why the old dog howls in sadness.

And your little sister's immaculate virginity wings away on the bony
shoulders of a young horse named George who stole surreptitiously into
her geography revision.
The examining body examined her body.

Actor of the low-high Q, let's hear your view.
Peek at the lines upon your sleeve, since your memory won't do.
Tell me how the baby's graded, how the lady's faded
Why the old dogs howl with madness.

All of this and some of that's the only way to skin the cat.

And now you've lost a skin or two- you're for us and we for you.
The dressing room is right behind
We've got you taped, you're in the Play.
How does it feel to be in the Play?
How does it feel to play the Play?
How does it feel to be the Play?

Man of passion rise again, we won't cross you out.
For we do love you like a son, of that there's no doubt.
Tell us, is it you who are here for our good cheer?
Or are we here for the glory, for the story
For the gory satisfaction of telling you how absolutely awful you
really are?

There was a rush along the Fulham Road.
There was a hush in the Passion Play.

This is the story of the hare who lost his spectacles!

Owl loved to rest quietly whilst no one was watching. Sitting on a
fence one day, he was surprised when suddenly a kangaroo ran close by.
Now this may not seem strange, but when Owl overheard Kangaroo whisper
to no one in particular, "The hare has lost his spectacles", well, he
began to wonder.
Presently, the moon appeared from behind a cloud, and there, lying on
the grass, was Hare. In the stream that flowed by the grass- a newt.
And sitting astride a twig of a bush- a bee.
Ostensibly motionless, the hare was trembling with excitement, for
without his spectacles he was completely helpless. Where were his
spectacles? Could someone have stolen them? Had he mislaid them? What
was he to do?
Bee wanted to help, and thinking he had the answer, began, "You
probably ate them thinking they were a carrot".
"No!" interrupted Owl, who was wise. "I have good eysight, insight,
and foresight. How could an intelligent hare make such a silly
mikstake?" But all this time, Owl had been sitting on the fence,
scowling!
Kangaroo were hopping mad at this sort of talk. She thought herself
far superior in intelligence to the others. She was their leader,
their guru. She had the answer: "Hare, you must go in search of the
optician"
But then she realized that Hare were completely helpless without his
spectacles. And so, Kangaroo loudly proclaimed, "I can't send Hare in
search of anything!"
"You can, guru, you can!" shouted Newt. "You can send him with Owl."
But Owl had gone to sleep. Newt knew too much to be stopped by so
small a problem: "You can take him in your pouch." But alas, Hare was
much too big to fit into Kangaroo's pouch.
All this time, it had been quite plain to Hare that the others knew
nothing about spectacles.
As for all their tempting ideas, well Hare didn't care.
The lost spectacles were his own affair.
And after all, Hare did have a spare a-pair...
A-pair...


We sleep by the ever-bright hole in the door
Eat in the corner, talk to the floor.
Cheating the spiders who come to say "Please"
Politely they bend at the knees.

Well I'll go to the foot of our stairs.

Old gentlemen talk of when they were young
Of ladies lost and erring sons.
Lace-covered dandies revel with friends
Pure as the truth tied at both ends.

Well I'll go to the foot of our stairs.

Scented cathedral-spire pointed down
We pray for souls in Kentish town.
A delicate hush- the gods floating by
Wishing us well- pie in the sky.
God of Ages, Lord of Time
Mine is the right to be wrong.

Well I'll go to the foot of our stairs.

Jack rabbit mister, spawn a new breed
Of love-hungry pilgrims, no bodies to feed
Show me a good man and I'll show you the door.
The last hymn is sung and the devil cries "More"

Well, I'm all for leaving and that being done
I've put in a request to take up my turn
In that forsaken paradise that calls itself Hell
Where no one has nothing and nothing is well-

-meaning fool, pick up thy bed and rise
Up from your gloom smiling.
Give me your hate and do as the loving heathen do.

Colors I've none- dark or light, red, white or blue
Cold is my touch- freezing
Summoned by name, I am the overseer over you.

Given this command to watch o'er our miserable sphere.
Fallen from grace, called on
To bring sun or rain, occasional corn from my oversight grew.

Fell with mine angels from a far better place
Offering services for the saving of face.
Now you're here you may as well admire
All whom living has retired
From the benign reconciliation.

Legends were born surrounding mysterious lights
Seen in the sky, flashing.
I just lit a fag, then took my leave in the blink of an eye.

Passionate play, join round the maypole in dance
Primitive rite- wrongly
Summoned by name, I am the overseer over you.

Flee the icy Lucifer!
Oh he's an awful fellow!
What a mistake! I didn't take
A feather from his pillow.

Here's the everlasting rub
Neither am I good or bad
I'd give up my halo for a horn
And the horn for the hat I once had.
I'm only breathing, there's life on my ceiling
The flies there are sleeping quietly...

Twist my right arm in the dark
I would give two or three for
One of those days that never made
Impressions on the old score.

I would gladly be a dog
Barking up the wrong tree
Everyone's saved- we're in the grave
See you there for afternoon tea.

Time for awaking, the tea-lady's making
A brew up and baking new bread...

Pick me up at half past none
There's not a moment to lose
There is the train on which I came
On the platform are my old shoes.

Station master rings his bell
Whistles blow and flags wave
A little of what you fancy does
You good, or so it should

I thank everybody for making me welcome
I'd stay but my wings have just dropped off.

Hail, Son of Kings! Make the ever-dying sign
Cross your fingers in the sky for those about to BE.
There am I, waiting along the sand.
Cast your sweet spell upon the land and sea.

Magus Perde', take your hand from off the chain
Loose a wish to still the rain, the storm about to BE.
Here am I, Voyager into life.
Tough are the soles that tread the knife's edge.

Break the circle, stretch the line, call upon the Devil.
Bring the gods, the gods' own fire in the conflict revel.

The passengers upon the ferry crossing, waiting to be born
Renew the pledge of life's long song, rise to the reveille horn.

Animals queueing at the gate that stands upon the shore
Breathe the ever-burning fire that guards the ever-door.

Man, son of man, buy the flame of ever-life
Yours to breathe and breath the pain of living, living BE!
Here am I! Roll the stone away
From the dark into ever-day.

There was a rush along the Fulham Road
Into the ever-Passion Play.


1996 - 2014 Willerup Brothers