The Road

This is song number 18. To listen to it, please click here: The Road


Here we go
Making our way down the road
Fast or slow
Reaping whatever we sowed

Day or night
Following those that have gone
Out of sight
We’ll catch up with them before long

Down the days and down the years
Drifting sands and shifting gears
Too dark to see but your heart’s still
Breaking the code

Leaves are falling, trees let go
Leaves for burning, down below
Before too long there’s ice and snow
On the road

We will try
Like wise men that steered from afar
By the sky
To honour and follow our star

If you find
That you’re tired and if ever you do
Fall behind
Don’t worry – I’ll wait here for you

Down the river and up the creek
Hope springs eternal, or springs a leak
It’s hard to turn the other cheek
On the road

Still it’s great to be alive
It’s better to travel than to arrive
Whether you walk or whether you’re driving
A load

Friends we had
And friends we lost on the way
Times were bad
We were burnt by the heat of the day

But we smile
We’re carrying on to the end
Mile on mile
We hope for good luck round the bend

You’ll never need to apologize
For the sorrow brimming in your eyes
I know the score and I’ve seen the prize
That’s bestowed

Not every story has been told
Love is waiting to unfold
At rainbow’s end there’s a pot of gold
On the road



Filed under Ireland, Music, Philosophy of life

34 responses to “The Road

  1. papaguinea

    Hauntingly beautiful. I think it says everything that has gone before – all 17 songs in one! And it hints at everything that is to come. Brendano, I really really like those words but I do not dare hear the song yet – I just can’t imagine music doing justice to it. Having said that I guess you are going to throw me with a simple upbeat/country feel. I shall put the music on hold for several hours at least as i want to drink from these words time and time again. I think you have reached a milestone!

    • Thanks very much, PapaG. Actually I did envisage an upbeat/country feel for this, but wasn’t pleased with it when I recorded it, so I went for a slower/quieter feel. I hope you’ll like the tune.

      • papaguinea

        You cracked it. The tune supports the words and there is a lilting journeying feel to it. I can imagine the first four lines being sung repeatedly at the end as if everyone (in the pub or concert hall) is invited to join in, making their way down that road.

        Before listening to this, I had a go at composing a tune, but not getting very far. However my first three notes (Here we go) were exactly the same as yours and the second line was very similar!

        There are so many memorable lines here, simply said but with great depth, verses 3 and 4 for example.And I really like the way you have accompanied this tune on the guitar. I do hope others like this song and I do think you have a gift for it.

        • Again, thanks very much … I’m really glad you like it. I found it took a fair bit of work to get some of the verses to my satisfaction. They come eventually, if you give them time.

          I’m glad to hear that you’re composing. I have written a fair bit of poetry, but I find songs easier. With poetry everything depends on the words, and with instrumental music, obviously, everything depends on the tune. With a song you’re not depending entirely on either words or music – one supports the other – it’s less pure, so that makes it easier, or so I have found!

  2. papaguinea

    PS In that picture, Sean and the dogs are one. One big heart.

  3. It’s beautiful, Brendano. There is nothing greater than the knowledge and reassurance of unconditional love, and you express that unconditional love with the power of simplicity in the lines ‘don’t worry, I’ll wait for you’ and ‘you’ll never need to apologize’. I think that unconditional love is what creates the road you are singing about, for without it there can be no road, no road at all.

    I like the music that goes with the words.

    • Thank you for the close-up. A lot of canine white-of-eye in this one. I can also see Sean’s 2005 Lions jersey, and know vaguely what these items of clothing mean to boys and men, although I am not one of the cognoscenti. I do not follow the dealings closely, but I know that my sons sometimes buy such jerseys with their pocket money and then give and exchange them, and they (the jerseys) seem to be invested with great symbolism and mystic power.

      • Yes. Unfortunately, wearing a similar one didn’t protect Brian O’Driscoll from being driven head-first into the ground by Tana Umaga and Kevin Mealamu.

        Sean loved his Munster, Ireland and Lions jerseys, probably in that order.

        • Very racist comment, Brendano. I bet you hate the haka too. You must learn how to worship cultural specificity.

          Sour grapes.

        • When I was about fourteen, it was the fashion for girls to wear a rugby shirt with their jeans. I think that the nec plus ultra was to wear a boyfriend’s rugby jersey.

          Unfortunately I did not have a boyfriend and in fact had never even met any boys ( British boarding school sharia law – excellent)

          Fortunately there were cheap shops where one could buy a pretend rugby shirt at half term. I went to one of those with my grandmother who was happy about me wanting to be fashionable, and I remember her complaining about the way the stripes did not match up at the seams.

  4. papaguinea

    Pyjama Ragtime Blues is being sent to you Brendano, Paulilne and Cymbeline – a weekend surprise from PapaG. PS Brendano did you know the Commercial Hotel/Pub in Railton Road, Herne Hill, South London? They used to have rugby shirts framed and hung across the length of one of the walls. I think there was an association with London Welsh players. I’m talking of the late 60’s.

    • Thanks very much, PG … PRB is charming. I don’t think I was ever in that pub, although I did live briefly in Herne Hill in 1980. I would have known the Brixton/Stockwell area better.

      Looking forward to the weekend’s rugby, if I can find somewhere to watch it!

      • Dave

        I watched the first half Brendan and then had to go and collect Blaine in Warrenpoint and missed the second half:-(. It was a tough game for Munster but didn’t O’Gara pulled the rabbit out of the hat again with that drop goal in overtime? Must have been a thrilling final few minutes to watch!

        • Hi Dave … we watched it in the (almost empty) local. Not as exciting as last week’s … Munster struggled and made a lot of mistakes … but certainly a great finish. Sean would have loved it, as Pauline said to me immediately.

    • Thank you very much Brendano and Papaguinea for the joyful photograph. I am sure Kojo will grow up to be a fine musician. Children are deeply influenced by what goes on at home. Musical household, musical children.

      • P.S. Kojo has some catching up to do. As a student, I used to go to the Half Moon public house, dressed in my paisley Marks and Spencer’s men’s pyjamas. Bedtime pint. My fellow flatmates did the same. One is a Daily Telegraph journalist now. The other works for Reuter’s.

        • Sounds like an excellent custom.

        • papaguinea

          You know Cymbeline, that pub, the Half Moon, used to be my local in the days when there was live entertainment from a pianist and a collection of oddball singers, one of whom was often the landlord by the name of Harry. One evening my brother stole an oil painting (crap picture) from the men’s toilet. There were some great nights there and some real characters, After the Half Moon we would eat a curry at Rajah’s Railton Road. The Good Old Days for me! I know the pub became a sort of rock venue later on.I still go in there occasionally with old school friends. I once saw Elton Jack there, an Elton John impersonator from Australia. The bird i was with was so drunk she thought it was the real deal, and yes, he WAS good!

      • Great stories, Papaguinea. My Half Moon was in Durham, and actually I have just remembered that the pyjama sessions were in the Vic. The Vic could be accessed by a very short alley from our flat, hence the temptation to run out there in our nightclothes. Chap called Michael ran it, and he was very fond of us. I took my husband there before he became my husband. They were not used to French accents in there and when he asked for a pint of bitter, he was given a pineapple juice, which he drank stoically.

        • I once went to see Wilko Johnson play at the Half Moon in Putney.

        • papaguinea

          DOH! I had automatically assumed your Half Moon was the one adjacent to the Commercial pub previously mentioned by me in this post! You palnt a delightful picture – who would not fall in love with girls in their pyjamas, and drinking at the bar!

        • Oh no! We didn’t sit at the bar. Good Lord, no. We weren’t showing off. The Vic had several rooms and we used to sit in a dark little room at the back and have interesting conversations. Old-fashioned Victorian pub.

  5. I listened to the audio file. What a beautiful song with nice lyrics. Thanks for sharing it with us! 🙂

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