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Singing The Spirit Home

Eric Bogle


Lingua: Inglese


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[1986]
Album “Singing The Spirit Home”

bogle86

“A true story about a young black man being executed in a South African prison a few years ago. As they dragged him along the corridor to the gallows, all the other black men from their cells in the prison, started to sing a freedom song to him. It must have been the last sound he heard as they hung him.”(Eric Bogle)
They came for him in the morning, an hour before dawning
The pale white moon was waning in the African sky
The cell door flew wide open, they stood looking at him
He saw no mercy in their hearts, no pity in their eyes

As they took him and they bound him, tied his trembling hands behind him
He felt his courage leave him, his manhood disappear
His legs would not support him, so from the cell they dragged him
He sobbed and screamed and cursed them in his loneliness and fear

Chains, chains, chains
How many souls have died in freedom's name
To some it is a way of life, to others just a word
To some it is a snow-white dove, to some a bloody sword
But until the last chains fall, freedom will make slaves of us all

With faces closed and hidden the white guards walked beside him
Indifferent to his pleading - they'd been down this path before
But other eyes were watching, other ears were listening
Other hearts beat with him in his final desperate hour

From the darkness of that prison came the sound of his brothers singing
Courage, their voices told him, you do not walk alone
From their cells beyond the shadow he heard their voices echo
As in love and pride and sorrow they sang his spirit home

Chains, chains, chains
How many souls have died in freedom's name
To some it is a way of life, to others just a word
To some it is a snow-white dove, to some a bloody sword
But until the last chains fall, freedom will make slaves of us all

And their song of hope and freedom, it rang inside that prison
It beat against the iron bars and crashed against the stone
As in their fear and hate they hung him, the last sound that filled his being
Was his brothers singing, singing his spirit home

Courage, brother, you do not walk alone
We shall walk with you and sing your spirit home

Tshotsholosa, ezontaba stimela siphuma erhodesia
Wena uyabaleka kweso ntaba stimela siphuma erhodesia(*)
[Steam away, steam away over the hills, you train from Rhodesia.
You are fast-moving through hills, steam away, you train from Rhodesia.]

inviata da The Lone Ranger - 13/5/2010 - 10:16


(*) Si tratta di un tributo alla canzone sudafricana in lingua Ndebele o Zulu intitolata “Tshotsholosa”, un canto dei minatori che dalla Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) si spostavano per andare a lavorare nelle miniere a Johannesburg. Mi pare di aver capito che si trattasse di un canto anti-coloniale, un invito ai bianchi a sparire una volta per tutte dal paese…

The Lone Ranger - 13/5/2010 - 10:20



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