VdGG - The Least We Can Do is Wave to Each Ohter 1969

  1. Darkness (11/11)
  2. Refugees
  3. White Hammer
  4. Whatever Would Robert Have Said?
  5. Out Of My Book
  6. After The Flood
  7. DARKNESS (11/11)

    Day dawns dark, it now numbers infinity...
    Life crawls from the past, watching in wonder
    I trace its patterns in me....
    Tomorrow's tomorrow is birth again/
    Boats burn the bridge in the fens/
    The time of the past returns to my life
    and uses it.
    Don't blame me for the letters that may form in the sand;
    don't look in my eyes, you may see all the numbers
    that stretch in my sky and colour my hand...
    Don't say that I'm wrong in imagining
    that the voice of my life cannot sing!
    Fate enters and talks in old words:
    They amuse it.
    Hands shine darkly and white: only in dark do they appear.
    Bless the baby born today,
    flying in pitch, flying on fear!
    (Wicked little Scorpio, doomed to die a thousand times
    before he lives!)
    They shine in my eyes and touch my face
    where I have seen them placed before...
    don't blame me, please, for the fate that falls:
    I did not choose it.


    N. was somewhere years ago and cold:
        ice locked the people's hearts and made them old.
    S. was birth to pleasant lands, but dry:
        I walked the waters' depths and played my mind.
    E. was dawn, coming alive in the golden sun:
        the winds came gently, several heads became one
    in the summertime, though august people sneered...
        we were at peace, and we cheered
    We walked along, sometimes hand in hand,
    between the thin lines marking sea and sand;
    smiling very peacefully,
    we began to notice that we could be free,
    and we moved together to the West.
    W. is where all days shall someday end;
        where the colours turn from grey to gold,
        and you can be with the friends.
    And light flakes the golden clouds above:
        West is Mike and Susie,
        West is where I love.
    There we shall spend the final days of our lives...
        tell the same old stories: well, at least we tried.
    So into the West, smiles on our faces, we'll go;
        oh! yes, and our apologies to those
        who'll never really know the Way....
    We're refugees, walking away from the life we've known and loved...
    nothing to do nor say, nowhere to stay; now we are alone.
    We're refugees, carrying all we own in brown bags, tied up with string...
    nothing to think, it doesn't mean a thing, but we'll be happy on our own.
    West is Mike and Susie;
    West is Mike and Susie;
    West is where I love,
    West is refugees' home.


    In the year 1486 the Malleus first appeared,
    designed to kill all witchcraft and end the papal fears:
    prescribing tortures to kill the Black Arts...
        ...and the Hammer struck hard.
    Malleus Maleficarum slaughtered and tortured
    all those under suspicion, as the Inquisition ordered--
    burning black hearts and innocents alike, killing the mad
        ...such was the power the Hammer had.
    Though Hexenhammer was intended to slay only evil,
    fear and anger against magick overspilled:
        they also killed those of the White.
    So for two centuries and more they tried to slay
    both the Black and the White arts--
    but spirit over-rides pain.
    For every one the torture took, two were hid secure,
        and so the craft endured.
    Love and hate lived on in the face of fear,
    Hexenhammer's force died,
        and the real power became clear:
    White Hammer no more is beaten; now it begins to beat,
    and the Grey, once oppressor,
    now, at good hands, faces defeat.
    The Black, too, shall bow down to the power above....
        Black hate beats Grey
        But supreme is
        the White Hammer of Love.


    I AM the suck of air you take that you've had many times before;
    I AM the blow of air you fake, but which still throws you out the door;
    I AM the air that fills your lungs, but leaves you emptier than below;
    I AM the void that you can't explain, but which is where you want to go;
    I AM the love you try to hide, but which all can understand;
    I AM the hate you still deny, though the blood is on your hands;
    I AM the peace you're searching for, but you know you'll never find;
    I AM the pain you can't endure, but which tingles in your mind.
    Flame sucks between the balls of steel;
    nothing moves, the air itself congeals.....
    Look at the flame if you want to,
    hear the sharp crack of the fission,
    smell the brief vapour of ozone,
    feel static motion!
    I AM the joy you really pay for, but which comes completely free;
        for the truth is you are me.


    We sat by ourselves, still looking for company;
    there could have been peace, but that eluded me--
    all I could think of was what was on your mind.
    You tried to be kind,
    but I blocked your feelings.
    Now, senses still reeling, you sit in your quiet room
    and cry.
    You tried to make me one,
    but I always hide when there's a glimpse of sun.
    Running along in sunlight meadows
    your eyes were never more than half-closed:
    through fluttering lashes, you watched me watching you.
    I tried to be true
    to the way that you thought I ought to be
    but, in spite of all my efforts,
    I failed.
    I tried to make you see
    but your eyes were blind to all but the bad in me.
    What do you think I mean
    when I say that I need you?
    How am I supposed to seem
    when we hit another problem and the answers
        are all torn from my book?
    Our lives are on paths we just can't control;
    we can grow closer as we get old....
    Can you imagine us as we adjust?
    Can you imagine us
    getting near eighty;
    we live more sedately, still hoping the dream will
    come true?
    We'll try to be secure....
    But I'm of uncertain mind
        and how can I be sure?
            how can I be sure?
            how can I be sure?


    Continuing the story, humanity stumbles--
    gone is the glory, there's a far distant rumble.
    The clouds have gathered and exploded now:
    axes shattered, there is no North or South!
    Far off, the ice is foundering slowly...
    the ice is turning to water.
        The water rushes over all,
        cities crash in the mighty wave;
        the final man is very small,
        plunging in for his final bathe.
    This is the ending of the beginning...
    this is the beginning of the end,
    middle of the middle, mid-point, end and start:
    the first peak rises, forces the waves apart.
    Far off, the ice is now re-forming:
    poles are fixed once more,
    water's receding, like death-blood.
        And when the water falls again,
        all is dead and nobody lives.
    And then he said:
    'Every step appears to be the unavoidable consequence of the
    preceding one, and in the end there beckons more and more
    clearly total annihilation!'
    This is the ending of the beginning...
    this, the beginning of the end.
    And when the water falls again
    all is dead and nobody lives....

    ALL SONGS BY PETER HAMMILL EXCEPT 'OUT OF MY BOOK' (HAMMILL/JACKSON) Recorded at Trident Studios, London, on the 11/12/13/14 December 1969. All titles done on 8-track, except 'After the Flood', on 16. Produced by John Anthony (of Tynemouth and Playgrounds) Engineered by Rob ('Oh sorry I forgot to take that') Cable* Tape Jockeying: Dave and Alan. *but he's great really!! . Thanks for adding things: Gerry Salisbury, Cornet on 'White Hammer' Mike Hurwitz, 'Cellos on 'Refugees' The cello parts were written by Hugh Piano on 'Refugees' played by Peter The quote in 'After the Flood' was from Albert Einstein Transport: Courtesy of Reg King Transhire (London) Ltd. and Goldie Amplification: Hiwatt Bananas by North End Road Market, SW6 Liquid sustenance by La Chasse and The Ship Papers: MM/NME/Beano/Rizla Red Reading matter: Asimov/Donleavy The Office was Tony/Gail/Margaret/Eve/Terry/Glenn Vibes: Sue/Alice/Gordian/Jenny/Michel/Gail/Nick Kate/Pete/Jim/Mark/Dave/Steve/Chrissy/Angie Johnny Moke/Sheila/Roger Thank you Ruth for the Candle and the marbles and Alice for the doughnut....and a jolly good time was. Dedicated to L. & M., without whom everyone would have been much happier....

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Sergey Petrushanko hammillru@mail.ru, 1998-2024