VdGG - Pawn Hearts 1971

  1. Lemmings (incorporating COG)
  2. Man-Erg
  3. A Plague of Lighthouse Keeper

    LEMMINGS (incorporating COG)

    I stood alone upon the highest cliff-top,
    looked down, around, and all that I could see
    were those that I would dearly love to share with
    crashing on quite blindly to the sea....
    I tried to ask what game this was,
    but knew I would not play it:
    the voice, as one, as no-one, came to me....
    'We have looked upon the heroes
    and they are found wanting;
    we have looked hard across the land,
    but we can see no dawn;
    we have now dared to sear the sky,
    but we are still bleeding;
    we are drawing near to the cliffs,
    now we can hear the call.
        The clouds are piled in mountain-shapes,
        there is no escape except to go forward.
        Don't ask us for an answer now,
        it's far too late to bow to that convention.
    What course is there left but to die?
    We have looked upon the High Kings,
    found them less than mortals:
    their names are dust before the just
    march of our young, new law.
    Minds stumbling strong, we hurtle on
    into the dark portal;
    No-one can halt our final vault
    into the unknown maw.
        And as the Elders beat their brows
        they know that it is really far too late now to stop us.
        For if the sky is seeded death
        what is the point in catching breath?...Expel it!
    What cause is there left but to die
    in search of something we're not quite sure of?'
    What cause is there left but to die?
    What cause is there left but to die?
    What cause is there left but to die?
        ...I really don't know why...
    I know our ends may be soon
    but why do you make them sooner?
    Time may finally prove
    only the living move her and
    no life lies in the quicksand.
    Yes I know it's
    Out of control, out of control:
    Greasy machinery slides on the rails,
    Young minds and bodies on steel spokes impaled....
    Cogs tearing bones, cogs tearing bones:
    Iron-throated monsters are forcing our screams,
    Mind and machinery box-press the dreams.
        ...but there still is time...
    Cowards are they who run today,
    the fight is beginning...
    no war with knives, fight with our lives,
    lemmings can teach nothing;
    death offers no hope, we must grope
    for the unknown answer:
    unite our blood, abate the flood,
    avert the disaster...
        there's other ways than screaming in the mob:
        that makes us merely cogs of hatred.
        Look to the why and where we are,
        look to yourselves and the stars and in the end
    What choice is there left but to live
    in the hope of saving
    our children's children's little ones?
    What choice is there but to live?
    What choice is there but to live?
    What choice is there but to live?
        to save the little ones?
    What choice is there left but to try?


    The killer lives inside me: I can feel him move.
    Sometimes he's lightly sleeping in the quiet of his room,
        but then his eyes will rise and stare through mine;
        he'll speak my words and slice my mind inside.
    The killer lives.
    The angels live inside me: I can feel them smile....
    Their presence strokes and soothes the tempest in my mind
        and their love can heal the wounds that I have wrought.
        They watch me as I go to fall--well, I know I shall be caught,
    For the angels live.
    How can I be free?
    How can I get help?
    Am I really me?
    Am I someone else?
    But stalking in my cloisters hang the acolytes of gloom
    and Death's Head throws his cloak onto the corner of my room and I am doomed..
    But laughing in my courtyard play the pranksters of my youth
    and solemn, waiting Old Man in the gables of the roof:  he tells me truth...
    And I, too, live inside me and very often don't know who I am:
    I know, I'm not a hero.....I hope that I'm not damned.
        I'm just a man, and killers, angels, all are these:
        Dictators, saviours, refugees
            in war and peace
    as long as Man lives....
    I'm just a man, and killers, angels, all are these:
    Dictators, saviours, refugees........


    i. Eyewitness
    Still waiting for my saviour,
    storms tear me limb from limb;
    my fingers feel like seaweed...
    I'm so far out I'm too far in.
    I am a lonely man...my solitude is true
    my eyes have borne stark witness
    and now my knights are numbered too.
        I've seen the smiles on dead hands--
        the stars shine, but they're not for me.
    I prophesy disaster and then I count the cost....
    I shine but, shining, dying,
    I know that I am almost lost.
    On the table lies blank paper/my tower is built on stone/
    I only have blunt scissors/I only have the bluntest home....
        I've been the witness, and the seal of death
        lingers in the molten wax that is my head.
    When you see the skeletons of sailing-ship spars sinking low
    You'll begin to wonder if the points of all the ancient myths
        are solemnly directed straight at
    ii. Pictures/Lighthouse
    iii. Eyewitness
    No time now for contrition:
    the time for that's long past.
    The walls are thin as tissue
    and if I talk I'll crack the glass.
        So I only think on how it might have been,
        locked in silent monologue, in silent scream
    Anyway, I'm much too tired to speak
    and, as the waves crash on the bleak
    stones of the tower, I start to freak....
        ...and find that I am overcome...
    iv. S.H.M.
    'Unreal, unreal!' ghost helmsmen scream
                and fall in through the sky,
    not breaking through my seagull shrieks...
                no breaks until I die:
        the spectres scratch on window-slits--
        hollowed faces, mindless grins
    only intent on destroying what they've lost.
    I craw the wall till steepness ends in the vertical fall;
    my pail has sailed into the sea: no joking hopes at dawn.
        White bone shine in the iron-jaw mask
        lost mastheads pierce the freezing dark
    and parallel my isolated tower....
            no paraffin for the flame
            no harbour left to gain
    v. The Presence of the Night/Kosmos Tours
    'Alone, alone,' the ghosts all call,
    pinpoint me in the light.
    The only life I feel at all
    is the presence of the night.
    Would you cry if I died?
    Would you cry if I died?
    Would you catch the final words of mine?
    Would you catch my words?
    I know that there's no time
    I know that there's no rhyme...
        false signs find me
    I don't want to hate,
    I just want to grow;
    why can't I let me
    live and be free?..but I die very slowly alone.
    I know no more ways,
    I am so afraid,
    myself won't let me
    just be myself and so I am completely alone....
        The maelstrom of my memory
        is a vampire and it feeds on me
    now, staggering madly, over the brink I
    vi. (Custard's) Last Stand
    Lighthouses might house the key
        but can I reach the door?
    I want to walk on the sea
        so that I may better find ashore...
    but how can I ever keep my feet dry?
    I scan the horizon
    I must keep my eyes on all parts of me.
    Looking back on the years
        it seems that I have lost the way:
    Like a dog in the night, I have run to a manger
    ...now I am the stranger I stay in.
    All of the grief I have seen
        leaves me chasing solitary peace;
    but I hold experience in my head....
    I'm too close to the light
    I don't think I see right, for I blind me....
    vii. The Clot Thickens
    WHERE is the God that guides my hand?
    HOW can the hands of others reach me?
    WHEN will I find what I grope for?
    WHO is going to teach me?
    I am me/me are we/we can't see
        any way out of here.
    Crashing sea/atrophied history:
        Chance has lost my Guinevere....
    I don't want to be one wave in the water
    But sea will drag me deep
    One more haggard DROWNED MAN...
    I can see the Lemmings coming, but I know I'm just a man;
    Do I join or do I founder? Which can is the best I may?
    viii. Land's End (Sineline)/We Go Now
    Oceans drifting sideways, I am pulled into the spell;
    I feel you around me...I know you well.
    Stars slice horizons where the lines stand much too stark;
    I feel I am drowning...hands stretch in the dark.
    Camps of panoply and majesty, what is Freedom of Choice?
    Where do I stand in the pageantry...whose is my voice?
    It doesn't feel so very bad now: I think the end is the start.
    Begin to feel very glad now:
    All arrangements by the band. Hugh Banton:- Hammond E&C, Farfisa Professional organs, Piano, Mellotron, ARP Synthesiser, bass pedals, bass guitar, psychedelic razor, vocals. Guy Evans:- Drums, tympani, percussion, piano. Peter Hammill:- Lead vocals, acoustic & slide guitar, electric piano, piano. David Jackson:- Tenor, alto & soprano saxophones and devices, flute, vocals. and Fripp:- Electric guitar. PRODUCER: John Anthony ENGINEERS: Robin Cable, David Hentschel, Ken Scott Tape op. Mike and Dave C. Brightest Hope:- Howard. COVER by Paul Whitehead/CLEEN MASHINE STUDIO PHOTOGRAPHY: Keith Morris! Recorded at Trident Studios, London W.1. July through September 1971 aided and abetted by Nohjindijcrackycracky

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