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Songbob Lyr Add: An Ode (Arthur O'Shaughnessy) (3) Lyr Add: AN ODE (Arthur O'Shaughnessy) 03 May 99

In the thread on "best lines," this poem, which has been set to music by several folkies and Edward Elgar, too, came up. Here it is as I sing it:


We are the music-makers,
We are the dreamers of dreams.
Wandering by lone sea-breakers,
Or sitting by desolate streams.
World-losers and world-forsakers,
On whom the pale moon beams.
Yet we are the movers and shakers
Of the world forever, it seems.

From many a matchless ditty
And many the wondrous story,
We built the world's great cities
And fashioned an empire's glory.
One man with a dream at leisure
Can go out and conquer a crown
But three with a new song's measure
Can crumble an empire down.

Chorus (verse 1)

We, in the ages lying
In the dim, dark dust of the earth
Built Nineveh with our sighing,
And Babel itself with our mirth.
Then o'erthrew them with prophesying
To the old of the new world's worth
For each age is a dream that's dying
Or a new one coming to birth.

Chorus (verse 1)

Words by Arthur Shaunessy (18??-1889)
New words and music ©1990, Bob Clayton

Of course, without the music, it's hard to "hear" it, but there it is, anyway.

Bob Clayton

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