Folkklassieker du jour: Late November

Geschreven na Denny’s vertrek uit de Britse folkrockgroep Fairport Convention, met wie ze even daarvoor het klassieke Liege and Lief had gemaakt. In Late November verwerkte Sandy enkele traumatische ervaringen, waaronder het verkeersongeval dat het leven kostte aan Fairport’s  drummer Martin Lamble en Richard Thompson’s toenmalige vriendin Jeannie Franklyn. Het laatste couplet verwijst waarschijnlijk naar een incident uit 1969, toen voor Sandy’s ogen aan de Schotse kust een gevechtsvliegtuig in zee stortte. Sandy Denny bleef na dat incident nog maandenlang last houden van nachtmerries.

The wine it was drunk, the ship it was sunk
The shot it was dead, all the sorrows were drowned
The birds they were clouds, the brides and the shrouds
And as we drew south the mist it came down

The wooded ravine to the wandering stream
The serpent he moved, but no-one would say
The depths of the waters, the bridge which distraught us
And brought to me thoughts of the ill-fated day

The temples were filled with the strangest of creatures
One played it by ear on the banks of the sea
That one was found but the others they went under
Oh the tears which are shed, they won’t come from me

The methods of madness, the pathos and the sadness
God help you all, the insane and wise
The black and the white, the darkness of the night
I see only smoke from the chimneys arise

The pilot he flew all across the sky and woke me
He flew solo on the mercury sea
The dream it came back, all about the tall brown people
The sacred young herd on the phosphorus sand