History And Geography

Lyric by Clive James, music by Pete Atkin

The history and geography of feeling less than wonderful is known to me
The dates of broken bubbles and the whereabouts of every lost belief
And from the Point of Tears I see how far away across the Sea of Troubles
The Pinnacles of Happiness are halfway hidden in the Clouds of Grief.

My common sense can tell me all it likes to count myself among the lucky
For pity's sake to draw a breath and take a look around me and compare
But all I seem to see and hear is something I'm unable to remember
The flowing speech that stuttered out, the pretty song that faded on the air.

When the jet returns me half awake and half asleep to what I call my homeland
I look down into the midnight city through the empty inkwell of the sky
And in that kit of instruments laid out across a velvet-covered table
I know that nothing lives which doesn't hold its place more worthily than I.

Without a home, without a name, a girl of whom to say 'this is my sister'
For I am all the daughters of my father's house and all the brothers too
I comb the rubble of a shattered world to find the bright face of an angel
And say again and say again that I have written this - this is for you.

The history and geography of feeling less than wonderful is known to me
When sunsets are unlovely and the dawns are coldly calculated light
And from the Heights of Arrogance across the steps that later I regretted
I see those angel faces flame their last and flicker out into the night.
Pete Atkin Discography