William Bloke


9th September 1996
100 
Vinyl copies of this album include an extra track after 'Goalhanger'
Cooking Vinyl COOK 100
Number of discs: 1

Another day dawns grey, its enough to make me spit
But we go on our way, just putting up with it
And when I try to make my feelings known to you
You sound like you have changed from red to blue

You’re a father now, you see things in different ways
For every parent will gain perspective on their wilder days
But that alone does not explain the changes I see in you
The way you’ve drifted off from red to blue

Sometimes I think to myself
Should I vote red for my class or green for our children?
But whatever choice I make
I will not forsake

So you bought it all, the best your money could buy
And I watched you sell your soul for their bright shining lie
Where are the principles of the friend I thought I knew
I guess you let them fade from red to blue

I hate the compromises that life forces us to make
We must all bend a little if we are not to break
But the ideals you’ve opted out of,
I still hold them to be true
I guess they weren’t so firmly held by you

I’m going upfield, way up on the hillside
I’m going higher than I’ve ever been before
That’s where you’ll find me, over the horizon
Wading in the river, reaching for that other shore

I dreamed I saw a tree full of angels, up on Primrose Hill
And I flew with them over the Great Wen till I had seen my fill
Of such poverty and misery sure to tear my soul apart
I’ve got a socialism of the heart, I’ve got a socialism of the heart

I’m going upfield, way up on the hillside
I’m going higher than I’ve ever been before
That’s where you’ll find me, over the horizon
Wading in the river, reaching for that other shore

The angels asked me how I felt about all I’d seen and heard
That they spoke to me, a pagan, gave me cause to doubt their word
But they laughed and said: “I doesn’t matter if you’ll help us in our art
You’ve got a socialism of the heart, you’ve got a socialism of the heart”

I’m going upfield, way up on the hillside
I’m going higher than I’ve ever been before
That’s where you’ll find me, over the horizon
Wading in the river, reaching for that other shore

Their faces shone and they were gone and I was left alone
I walked these ancient empire streets till I came tearful to my home
And when I woke next morning, I vowed to play my part
I’ve got a socialism of the heart, I’ve got a socialism of the heart

I’m going upfield, way up on the hillside
I’m going higher than I’ve ever been before
That’s where you’ll find me, over the horizon
Wading in the river, reaching for that other shore

Everybody likes you babe but me
I guess that proves how stupid I can be
Your father thinks it’s swell, your mum hears wedding bells
Our friends all say we make a lovely couple we get on so well

People say that we’re a perfect match
They don’t realise that there’s a catch
They don’t have to live with you, forgive you for the things you do
There’s just no ignoring, you’re pretty but you’re boring

Everybody likes you babe, but me
They just don’t know how iffy you can be
I’d hate for you to go, before I let you know
That everybody loves you babe, but me

I’m begging you to stay out of my way
Cos everybody likes you babe, but me
Everybody likes you babe, but me

Sugardaddy took me to wonderland
Gave me so many presents I could not stand
To see you
I really couldn’t stand to see you

Sugardaddy took me far away
On a holiday, I didn’t have to pay
Just be there
All I had to do was be there

Sugardaddy comes with his pockets full of fun
Sugardaddy’s blowing kisses from his gun
What will he do and where will he run
When the real world comes to town

Sugardaddy took all my pain away
Now I have to say
I’d let him get away with murder
I’d let him get away with murder

He drives a car that doesn’t have a roof
He dares the Big Ol’ World to tell him the truth
By buying silence
He buys you silence

Silence, so you’ll never ask him why
Silence, so you’ll never say he makes you cry
Silence, so you’ll never look him in the eye
And say you want his time ‘cos time is money

Sugardaddy can’t help but overfill my cup
Sugardaddy always rides heavy on his luck
What will he do when his baby grows up
And doesn’t want the toys that he’s provided?

Sugardaddy comes with his pockets full of fun
Sugardaddy’s blowing kisses from his gun
What will he do and where will he run
When the real world comes to town

Rome never looks where she treads
Always her heavy hooves fall
On our stomachs, our hearts and our heads
And Rome never hears when we bawl

Her sentries pass on — that is all
And we gather behind them in hordes
And plot to reconquer the Wall
With only our tongues for our swords

For we are the little folk — we!
Too little to love or to hate
Leave us alone and you’ll see
That we can bring down the state

Mistletoe killing an oak
Rats gnawing cables in two
Moths making holes in a cloak
How they must love what they do!

Yes — and we little folk too
We are as busy as they
Working our works out of view
Watch, and you’ll see it some day

No indeed! We are not strong
But we know of Peoples that are
Yes and we’ll guide them along
To smash and destroy you in war

We shall be slaves just the same?
Yes, we have always been slaves
But you — you will die of the shame
And then we will dance on your graves

We are the worm in the wood!
We are the rot at the root!
We are the taint in the blood!
We are the thorn in the foot!

Rudyard Kipling

I ought to leave enough hot water
For your morning bath, but I’d not thought
I hate to hear you talk that way
But I can’t bring myself to say I’m sorry

The past is always knocking incessant
Trying to break through into the present
We have to work to keep it out
But I won’t be the first to say it’s over

I used to want to plant bombs at the Last Night of the Proms
But now you’ll find me with the baby, in the bathroom,
With that big shell, listening for the sound of the sea

I steal a kiss from you in the supermarket
I walk you down the aisle, you fill my basket
And through it all, the stick I take Is worth it for the love we make

I used to want to plant bombs at the Last Night of the Proms
But now you’ll find me with the baby, in the bathroom,
With that big shell, listening for the sound of the sea,
The baby and me

I stayed in bed, alone, uncertain
Then I met you, you drew the curtain
The sun came up, the trees began to sing
The light shone in on everything.
I love you.

The sun came up, the trees began to sing
The light shone in on everything.
I love you.

When I was young I told my mum
I’m going to walk on the Moon someday
Armstrong and Aldrin spoke to me
From Houston and Cape Kennedy
And I watched the Eagle landing
On a night when the Moon was full
And as it tugged at the tides, I knew deep inside
I too could feel its pull

I lay in my bed and dreamed I walked
On the Sea of Tranquillity
I knew that someday soon we’d all sail to the moon
On the high tide of technology
But the dreams have all been taken
And the window seats taken too
And 2001 has almost come and gone
What am I supposed to do?

Now that the space race is over
It’s been and it’s gone and I’ll never get to the moon
Because the space race is over
And I can’t help but feel we’ve all grown up too soon

Now my dreams have all been shattered
And my wings are tattered too
And I can still fly but not half as high
As once I wanted to

Now that the space race is over
It’s been and it’s gone and I’ll never get to the moon
Because the space race is over
And I can’t help but feel we’ve all grown up too soon

My son and I stand beneath the great night sky
And gaze up in wonder
I tell him the tale of Apollo And he says
“Why did they ever go?”
It may look like some empty gesture
To go all that way just to come back
But don’t offer me a place out in cyberspace
Cos where in the hell’s that at?

Now that the space race is over
It’s been and it’s gone and I’ll never get out of my room
Because the space race is over
And I can’t help but feel we’re all just going nowhere

It’s just a northern industrial town
The front doors of the houses open into the street
There’s no room for front gardens, just two-up two-down
In a northern industrial town

And you can see the green hills ‘cross the rooftops
And a fresher wind blows past the end of our block
In the evenings the mist come rolling on down
Into a northern industrial town

And there’s only two teams in this town
And you must follow one or the other
Let us win, let them lose, not the other way round
In a northern industrial town

And the street lights look pretty and bright
From the tops of the hills they rise dark in the night
If it weren’t for the rain you might never come down
To your northern industrial town

And on payday they tear the place down
With a pint in your hand and a bash’em out band
Sure they’d dance to the rhythm of the rain falling down
In a northern industrial town

And there’s plenty of artists around
Painters steal cars, poets nick guitars
Cos we’re out of the black and into the red
So give us this day our daily bread
In a northern industrial town

But it’s not Leeds or Manchester
Liverpool, Sheffield, nor Glasgow
It’s not Newcastle-on-Tyne. It’s Belfast
It’s just a northern industrial town

Merry Christmas, war is over
In a northern industrial town

I wish that I could remember the first moment that we met
If only I could remember that sweet moment when we met
If I knew then that I
Would spend the rest of my life with you
I imagine I would have held your gaze a little longer
When first our eyes met

Did it rain or did sunshine attend out first meeting?
What words were said? What weight given to that first greeting?
My diary doesn’t help
I don’t even mention your name until that summer
When bloomed the
Seed sown on the first day that we met

I know the date, I know the place where in happened
Yet in my mind the scene I recall is imagined
As we grow old I’m sure
There will be moments that we will not forget
But I would
Remember something of the moment that we met

He was trapped in a haircut he no longer believed in
She said “I’m a teacher here. I teach the children.”
And he wondered to himself then and there the things he could learn from her
A great might wonder

Think of the names you once called me in anger
Remember the sadness in Florence Ballard’s eyes
Imagine all the melancholy you could find in the arms of a stranger
Bread of heaven

Seems like nothing goes right
In the world that we were born in
But the horizon is bright
Yonder comes the morning

Upstairs they’re buying a stairway to Heaven
Down in the Garden they’re changing sticks into snakes
And the jangle of religious medals would put
The fear of God into an angel
Come all ye faithful

Their baby came home to them an unmarried mother
They wished that she would turn into a pillar of salt
But in the end compassion has to be the greatest family value
Help of the helpless

Looks like a drift to the Right
For the world we were born in
But the horizon is bright
Yonder comes the morning

He’s got the bonhomie of a game show host
And his handshake is so limp its like meeting a ghost
His apologies are tired cos he uses them a lot
His excuses are so lame if they were horses they’d be shot
He lies through his teeth with impeccable grammar
In the game of life he’s just a dreadful goalhanger

Keeping all his options open till the very last minute
Checking every situation trying to work out what’s in it
Trying to nail him down is like nailing water to a wall
He’s incapable of making a commitment at all
Like trying to knock in a nail with an inflatable hammer
In the game of life he’s just a dreadful goalhanger

Yesterday upon the stair I met a man who’s never there
He won’t be there again today
Well, that’s what he told me to say

He’s got the natural arrogance of an exclamation mark
And he wishes his bite was a big as his bark
He’s appealing to the referee at every single stage
He’s a fuzzy little bundle of impotent rage
And when he ought to have patience, he only has anger
In the game of life he’s just a dreadful goalhanger

His lack of humility defies imagination
And he hangs round like a fart in a Russian space station
He doesn’t even notice as he sells you down the river
Cos he’s one of life’s takers and he’s looking for a giver
He smirks and shrugs his shoulders as he drops another clanger
In the game of life he’s just a dreadful goalhanger

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© Billy Bragg 2019