Far Off on the Horizon

 

Launched in January 2018 to coincide with our going on tour with the legendary Fairport Convention. 12 more original songs of love, emigration and everyday people. Strings on a couple of tracks provided by the wonderful Marion Fleetwood.

"Another fine album of original songs.....Ghost..should be heard in every folk club in the country."  **** (4 stars) Dai Jeffries, R&R Magazine

"Skilfully written and highly varied....Winter Wilson are both expert musicians and strong singers."  **** (4 stars) Trevor Hodgett, Maverick Magazine

Lyrics

 

1. Far Off on the Horizon


Another night and sleep won't come;
I’m staring at the ceiling.
Just my thoughts for company
And the sound of my own breathing.
There's a battle raging in my head,
The saints against the sinners.
Oh restless night, oh restless night,
The ghost of you still lingers.

   There's too much space and I dare not dream
   On this bed where I am lying.
   And tomorrow's just another day,
   Far off on the horizon.

Why did you go? Why was it so?
What was it you were needing?
Did you hear the sound of dripping blood?
It was only my heart bleeding.
I gave whatever I could give,
Though it wasn't up to much.
A ransom for a tired smile,
Tokens for a tender touch.

   Chorus

Treachery comes with a smile
And deceit the warmest handshake.
Moonlit shadows icy cold,
Surrendering to day break.
And so morning comes just as it must;
The wheels they keep on turning.
Each shadowed face I know too well,
Each memory still burning .

   Chorus

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2. Grateful for the Rain (Billy Boy)

What would you know, it was pouring with rain.
I never asked why, but forever it seemed
There were clouds in the sky, gun-metal grey,
Choking the sun, day after day.

My mother, my father, my auntie and I
Gathered on the dockside to say our goodbyes.
I carried the bags for my sweet sister May
And I wondered if I’d see her again.

   Billy boy, oh Billy boy you'd better treat her good.
   There's not a single drop of bitterness 
   That flows within her blood.
   Billy boy, oh Billy boy stay faithful and stay true.
   My sweet sister May is Calgary bound
   For the love of you.

There was laughter and cheers as the ship pulled away.
Hard as I tried, I could not be brave.
I shouted and waved as the tears filled my eyes.
Grateful I was for the rain.

   Chorus

Stephen, oh Stephen you have no need to fret.
I love your sister dearly and happy we are wed.
Our life it isn't easy but we're young and we are strong.
Give us your blessing. Together we belong.

   Chorus

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3. I Cannot Remain


I am not yet a criminal sir, 
But I am a desperate man.
I have a wife and children sir; 
I'm sure you’ll understand.
I travelled to this country sir
To work and pay my way.
Now they're shouting in the streets sir
That I cannot remain.

I do the jobs that others won't; 
I've always done my best.
My boss said “If I'd ten more like you
I'd sack the bloody rest.”
I am an honest man sir; my taxes I have paid.
But now they're shouting in the streets sir
That I cannot remain.

Some welcomed me with open arms,
While others spat and cursed.
I've seen the very best of men, 
But now I fear the worst. 
Some gave us food and shelter sir, 
Embraced us as their friends.
Now there’s bricks thrown through our windows, sir.
How low must we descend?

Backs to the wall, nowhere to run,
They left us with no choice.
What options do you have sir, 
When you've been denied a voice?
I am a peaceful man sir, 
But I'm fearful for my life.
When all else has been taken sir,
You have to stand and fight.

I am not yet a criminal sir, but I am a desperate man.

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4. The Freo Doctor

Sweat runs down my forehead,
Dripping off my nose.
Too damn hot for working, 
But I've got to make the garden grow.
Feeling a little tetchy. The heat it's getting me down.
Waiting on the Freo Doctor to come rolling into town.

   Here come the Freo Doctor to get you through the day.
   When you're brain's gettin’ fried 
   And you're edgy and tired,
   You know the Doc'll blow your troubles away.

You hardly notice her coming.
She's so subtle, she's so smooth.
She'll take the ache out of your shoulders,
She'll take the black out of your blues.
Do you see that smile returning,
Feel that twitching around your chin?
There's only one explanation for that revelation,
The doctor's come around again.

   Chorus 

Mother Nature she saw the problem.
She knew what she had to do.
For not every man can sit at home by a fan
Drinking liquor and keeping cool.
She kept her eye on the poor folks toiling 
Underneath the midday sun.
Then she sent in the breeze their troubles to ease.
Yes the Doc she knows her medicine.

   Chorus & repeat

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5. Ghost


Me and my father didn't get along;
18 years when it all went wrong.
A one way ticket on a one way track;
I walked away with the clothes on my back.

There comes a point you can't take anymore.
I slept on couches, I slept on floors.
For the sake of my head I had to get away.
I pray to God it doesn't rain today.

   Well the government said it was self inflicted, 
   So I don't show up on their statistics.
   With the click of a mouse I disappeared;
   From a girl to a ghost at eighteen years.

Well you have to learn fast or you're gonna die trying,
And I've not been an angel, there's no denying.
But the lessons come hard along with the knocks
When you’re looking at the world from a cardboard box.

   Chorus

I might not be a genius but I'm not dumb;
I'm hitting my stride but I can't yet run.
I make a few quid selling magazines,
But the prospects are poor for a ghost of eighteen.

Now I have a new family of sisters and brothers 
And there's some ruthless swines as I’ve discovered. 
But there's plenty of good and helpful souls;
A hot bowl of soup and a warm bread roll.

   Chorus

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6. The Ship It Rocked

Woke up this morning half past five.
A six day journey lay ahead.
Another land, two thousand miles.
Tonight I pray for a stranger's bed.
There's nothing left of this old town,
It’s just bodies bombs and rubble,
They say that they can get me out,
But each day the price it doubles.

And the wolf he's howling at my door.
We have to make some money.
That well worn path's been trod before
To the land of milk and honey.

   Oh the ship it rocked and the ship it rolled.
   It turned our faces green-oh.
   If we ever make dry land, I'll go no more to sea-oh.

Desperate measures, desperate times,
You can't live without a future.
There's no goodness in this land of mine;
It's time for us to leave her.
We got nothing left save a little hope;
There’s jackals out there waiting.
And as I climb aboard this boat 
I can't stop my hands from shaking.

   Chorus

They say you can't trade human flesh,
No man can own another.
But when the devil calls you'll sell your soul,
You'll turn upon your brother.
There's glory out there somewhere,
Fair winds and steady tides.
There's glory out there somewhere,
If we can just get through tonight.

   Chorus

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7. Tried & Tested

ust what was is it you were looking for
On that dark and stormy night?
What was it you were missing?
What did you need to put things right?
Did you get a little hungry?
Is it something that you do?
But you'll always come back, babe,
To the tried and the tested and the true.

The sun is shining over yonder.
It's always a step away.
Don't be in such a hurry, babe,
It will shine on you some day.
You just need a little patience,
The skies are turning blue.
You know you can rely on
The tried and the tested and the true.

    I've been down that rocky road,
   Such a treacherous path.
   Don't step too close to the edge now babe,
   Cos it's a long and hard climb back.
   Let me pass on some pearls of wisdom.
   Take heed of my advice.
   You come this way but once child,
   So you better think twice.

Youth is wasted on the young,
I heard somebody say.
It takes years to get this stupid.
That's a price I've had to pay.
I'm throwing you my riches.
Are you picking up these clues?
When you're looking for an answer,
Look for the tried and the tested and the true.

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8. The Old Man Was a Sea Dog


Oh, the old man was a sea dog, he sailed the oceans wide.
He'd tell you that he won the war and I do believe he tried.
He swore that he had won the war, but he fought every night.
Me and my brother never understood;
I hope one day we might.

Oh the old man was a fireman, every schoolboy’s dream.
He'd keep the pistons pumping, shovelling coal and raising steam.
Throwing sparks up to the heavens, he'd drive the wheels around.
Oh, the old man was a fireman before the sun went down.

   We had chickens in the back yard, rabbits in the shed.
   Sailor boy, oh sailor boy what the hell was in your head?
   You lived your life in black and white, no colour to be found.
   Oh the old man was a sea dog, a legend of this town.

Oh the old man was a proud man, though in later years he slipped.
You never knew what he might do when a drink was on his lips.
Oh, he was seldom easy; it was part of growing up.
And you’d try to do your best 
But you could never do enough.

   Chorus

Now I'm singing a love song for a man I could not love.
There's no point in praying; he's not resting up above.
The memory fades each passing day;
The years they have been kind.
Oh, the old man was a sea dog;
Now he's easy on my mind.

   Chorus
 

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9. St Peter's Gate

Oh what is this, she said. Something's amiss, she said.
Goodness what's happened, what's this doing here?
Off she goes tidying, dusting and ironing.
No rest for the wicked, or so it appears.
Then the phone rings again, the mocking bird sings again.
The tune that it hums falls deaf on her ears.
For she pays no attention, it's only distraction.
There's things to be done and she's done them for years.

   Oh, she said, Heaven can wait.
   I've not got the time to go cleaning the brasses,
   Or polishing the railings on Saint Peter's Gate.
   Oh, now Jesus don't bother to phone.
   'Cause the damn thing can ring, I'll just let it sing.
   I've got plenty to do of my own.

Her mornings are taken up dressing and making up.
Always looks her best, she says someone might call.
She spends her afternoons dancing from room to room,
Catching the dust before it can fall.
Her evenings alone she'll spend, dreaming of long-lost friends,
So many lovers. who've all gone before.
This flower had faded, her looks became jaded.
She'd given her best, no one wanted what's left.
Now nobody knocks on her door.

   Chorus

A wedding dress in her room, thrown down one afternoon, Unwanted, discarded, torn off in despair. 
Her happiest day they said, but he said his love was dead.
He just couldn't do it, he no longer cared.
Then failing to understand she gave in to every man,
Seeking comfort from touching them, holding them near.
Only to be abused, mistaken and confused.
Cheap decoration, such humiliation, 
For not one of them really cared.

Oh, Heaven it's sure getting late. 
It's time I was up there, cleaning the brasses
Polishing the railings on Saint Peter's Gate.
Oh, now Jesus how come you don't phone?
Just give me a ring and I'll drop everything.
I'm tired of being alone.

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10. What Can I Do to Make You Happy?


Your days they must be long, my friend,
Your outlook is so bleak.
Sadness tumbles from your mouth
Every time you speak.
Why can’t you feel the summer sun,
Smell the roses, taste the breeze?
It seems you gauge your pleasure
On different terms to me.

   What can I do to make you happy?
   What can I do to make you smile?
   Is there something I could say 
   To brighten up your day?
   Say the word, I’d give it all to you.
   Tell me now, what can I do.

 It brings me down to see you so;
It’s sad to see such pain.
You see no wealth in giving,
Purely how much you can gain.
The measure of your fortunes
Are just numbers on a page.
True riches come from friendship, sweetheart,
Not a weekly wage.

   Chorus

Take the blinkers from your eyes my dear
And the wool out of your ears.
Break down your defenses;
There is nothing here to fear.
The secret lies within you;
Don’t tell me that you can’t
Embrace this life for what it is 
And not just what you want.

   Chorus

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11. When First I Met Amanda


When first I met Amanda I was drinking school milk,
My pockets crammed with nothing,
My head was full of guilt.
My world was spinning backwards; I had no idea why.
I just knew that I felt better when I looked into her eyes.
Yeah, everything felt better when I looked in her eyes.

We sat together in the classroom 
And she'd chatter all the day.
I'd mumble and I'd stutter, not knowing what to say.
I was happy just to listen, just to be there by her side.
The last time I saw Amanda I came close to crying.
Last time I saw Amanda it damn near made me cry.

There are roads you never travel;
There are signs that say what if,
Mysteries to unravel, lives we'll never live.
Some never get to say I love you;
Some whisper ’neath their breath.
Some spend their lives saying they're sorry,
While others can't forgive. 
All their lives saying they're sorry,
While others can't forgive.

When last I saw Amanda the years had been unkind.
There was pain within her heart,
There was trouble on her mind.
Her world was spinning backwards;
it was easy to see why.
I hope she felt a little better 
When she looked into my eyes.
I pray that she felt better
When she looked into my eyes.

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12. Hard Walkin'


I've got my feet in the water and I'm staring up the hill.
        It's a hard, hard walking but I'm on my way.
You don't achieve nothing by standing still.
        Hard walking but I'm on my way.

Dark times are coming there's a cold black night.
I ain't rolling over without a fight.

   They're wagging their fingers,
   They're hurling the blame.
   I won't subscribe to hatred, no, not in my name.
   Don't go begging to your masters. 
   They ain't gonna help.
   To get the job done we gotta do it ourselves.

Open wide your arms don't clench your fists.
Take a long hard look you know we're better than this.

Love one another it ain't a crime .
       Hard, hard walking but I'm on my way.
We can straighten this thing out.
Stick together we'll be fine.
       Hard walking but I'm on my way.
       Hard walking but I'm on my way.
       Hard walking yes we're on our way.

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