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Jethro Tull lyrics

Album: War Child [1974]

Tracks10
 01  War Child
 02  Queen and Country
 03  Ladies
 04  Back-Door Angels
 05  Sealion
 06 Skating Away on the Thin Ice of a New Day
 07  Bungle in the Jungle
 08  Only Solitaire
 09  The Third Hoorah
 10  Two Fingers
all Jethro Tull lyrics



War Child
I'll take you down to that bright city mile ---
there to powder your sweet face and paint on a smile,
that will show all of the pleasures and none of the pain,
when you join my explosion
and play with my games.
WarChild dance the days, and dance the nights away.
No unconditional surrender; no armistice day ---
each night I'll die in my contentment and lie in your grave.
While you bring me water and I give you wine ---
let me dance in your tea-cup and you shall swim in mine.
WarChild dance the days, and dance the nights away.
Open your windows and I'll walk through your doors.
Let me live in your country --- let me sleep by your shores.
WarChild dance the days, and dance the nights away.back to top
Queen and Country
The wind is on the river and the tide has turned too late,
So we're sailing for another shore where some other ladies wait.
To throw us silken whispers: catch us by the anchor chains ---
But we all laugh so politely and we sail on just the same.
For queen and country in the long dying day,
And it's been this way for five long years,
Since we signed our souls away.
We bring back gold and ivory; rings of diamonds; strings of pearls ---
Make presents to the government
So they can have their social whirl
With queen and country in the long dying day.
And it's been this way for five long years
Since we signed our souls away.
They build schools and they build factories
With the spoils of battles won.
And we remain their pretty sailor boys ---
Hold our heads up to the gun
Of queen and country in the long dying day.
And it's been this way for five long years
Since we signed our souls away.
To queen and country in the long dying day.
And it's been this way for five long years
Since we signed our souls away.back to top
Ladies
Ladies of leisure, with their eyes on the back roads ---
All looking for strangers, to whom they extend welcomes
With a smile and a glimpse of pink knees and elbows;
Of satin and velvet --- good ladies, good fortune.
Ladies.
They sing of their heroes: of solitary soldiers
Invested in good health and manner most charming.
Whose favors are numbered (none the less well intended)
By hours in a minute; by those ladies who bless them.
Ladies.back to top
Back-Door Angels
In and out of the front door, ran twelve back-door angels.
Their hair was a golden-brown ---
They didn't see me wink my eye.
`tis said they put we men to sleep with just a whisper,
And touch the heads of dying dogs --- and make them linger.
They carry their candles high --- and they light the dark hours.
And sweep all the country clean with pressed and scented wild-flowers.
They grow all their roses red, and paint our skies blue ---
Drop one penny in every second bowl ---
Make half the beggars lose,
Why do the faithful have such a will to believe in something?
And call it the name they choose,
Having chosen nothing.
Think I'll sit down and invent some fool ---
Some grand court jester.
And next time the die is cast, he'll throw a six or two.
In and out of the back-door, ran one front-door angel,
Her hair was a golden-brown ---
She smiled and I think she winked her eye.back to top
Sealion
Over the mountains, and under the sky ---
Riding dirty gray horses, go you and i.
Mating with chance, copulating with mirth ---
The sad-glad paymasters (for what it's worth).
The ice-cream castles are refrigerated;
The super-marketeers are on parade.
There's a golden handshake hanging round your neck,
As you light your cigarette on the burning deck.
And you balance your world on the tip of your nose ---
Like a sealion with a ball, at the carnival.
You wear a shiny skin and a funny hat ---
The almighty animal trainer lets it go at that.
You bark ever-so-slightly at the trainer's gun,
With you whiskers melting in the noon-day sun.
You flip and you flop under the big white top
Where the long-legged ring-mistress starts and stops.
But you know, after all, the act is wearing thin ---
As the crowd grows uneasy and the boos begin.
But you balance your world on the tip of your nose ---
You're a sealion with a ball at the carnival.
Just a trace of pride upon our fixed grins ---
For there is no business like the show we're in.
There is no reason, no rhyme, no right
To leave the circus `til we've said good-night.
The same performance, in the same old way;
It's the same old story to this passion play.
So we'll shoot the moon, and hope to call the tune ---
And make no pin cushion of this big balloon.
Look how we balance the world on the tips of our noses,
Like sealions with a ball at the carnival.back to top
Bungle in the Jungle
Walking through forests of palm tree apartments ---
Scoff at the monkeys who live in their dark tents
Down by the waterhole --- drunk every friday ---
Eating their nuts --- saving their raisins for sunday.
Lions and tigers who wait in the shadows ---
They're fast but they're lazy, and sleep in green meadows.
Let's bungle in the jungle --- well, that's all right by me.
I'm a tiger when I want love,
But I'm a snake if we disagree.

Just say a word and the boys will be right there:
With claws at your back to send a chill through the night air.
Is it so frightening to have me at your shoulder?
Thunder and lightning couldn't be bolder.
I'll write on your tombstone, ``i thank you for dinner.''
This game that we animals play is a winner.

Let's bungle in the jungle --- well, that's all right by me.
I'm a tiger when I want love,
But I'm a snake if we disagree.

The rivers are full of crocodile nasties
And he who made kittens put snakes in the grass.
He's a lover of life but a player of pawns ---
Yes, the king on his sunset lies waiting for dawn
To light up his jungle
As play is resumed.
The monkeys seem willing to strike up the tune.back to top
Only Solitaire
Brain-storming habit-forming battle-warning weary
Winsome actor spewing spineless chilling lines ---
The critics falling over to tell themselves he's boring
And really not an awful lot of fun.
Well who the hell can he be when he's never had v.d.,
And he doesn't even sit on toilet seats?
Court-jesting, never-resting --- he must be very cunning
To assume an air of dignity
And bless us all with his oratory prowess,
His lame-brained antics and his jumping in the air.
And every night his act's the same
And so it must be all a game of chess he's playing ---
``but you're wrong, steve: you see, it's only solitaire.''back to top
The Third Hoorah
Hoorah!
Warchild, dance the days and nights away ---
Sweet child, how do you do today?
When your back's to the wall,
And your luck is your all,
Then side with whoever you may.
Seek that which within lies waiting to begin
The fight of your life that is everyday.
Dance with the warchild --- hoorah.

Warchild, dance the days and nights away ---
Sweet child, how do you do today?
In the heart of your heart, there's the tiniest part
Of an urge to live to the death ---
With a sword on your hip and a cry on your lips
To strike life in the inner child's breast.
Dance with the warchild --- hoorah.

Warchild, dance the days and nights away ---
Sweet child, how do you do today?back to top
Two Fingers
I'll see you at the weighing-in,
When your life's sum-total's made
And you set your wealth in godly deeds
Against the sins you've laid.
And you place your final burden
On your hard-pressed next of kin:
Send the chamber-pot back down the line
To be filled up again.
And the hard-headed miracle worker
Who bathes his hands in blood,
Will welcome you to the final nod ---
And cover you with mud.
And he'll say, ``you really should make the deal,''
As he offers round the hat.
``you'd better lick two fingers clean ---
He'll thank you all for that.''
As you slip on the greasy platform,
And you land upon your back,
You make a wish and you wipe your nose upon the railway track.
While the high-strung locomotive,
With furnace burning bright,
Lumbers on --- you wave goodbye ---
And the sparks fade into night.

And as you join the good ship earth,
And you mingle with the dust ---
You'd better leave your underpants
With someone you can trust.
And when the old man with the telescope
Cuts the final strand ---
You'd better lick two fingers clean,
Before you shake his hand.back to top
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