Lyrics: The Faded Mansion On The Hill |
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The Faded Mansion On The Hill

by Clive James and Pete Atkin

When you see what can't be helped go by
With bloody murder in its eye
And the mouth of a man put on the rack
The voice of a man about to crack

When you see the litter of their lives
The stupid children, bitter wives
Your self-esteem in disarray
You do your best to climb away
From the streaming traffic of decay

Believing if you will that all these sick hate days
Are just a kind of trick Fate plays
But still behind your shaded eyes
That mind-constricting thick weight stays

When on the outskirts of the town
Comes bumping cavernously down
Out of the brick gateways
From the faded mansion on the hill
The out-of-date black Cadillac
With the old man crumpled in the back
That Time has not yet found the time to kill

Between the headlands to the sea the fleeing yachts of summer go
White as a sheet and faster than the driven snow
Like dolphins riding high and giant seabirds flying low

And square across the wind the cats and wingsails pull ahead
Living their day as if it almost could be said
The cemetery of home could somehow soon be left for dead

But the graveyard of tall ships is really here
Where the grass breaks up the driveway more each year
And here is all these people have
And everything they can't believe
The beach the poor men never reach
The shore the rich men never leave

Between the headlands from the sea the homing yachts of summer fill
The night with shouts and falling sails and then are still
The avenues wind up into the darkness of the hill
Where Time tonight might find the time to kill