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GUEST,alinact Greatest Anti-War Song Ever? (353* d) Lyr Add: WHEN BILLY CAME BACK (Burt/Champion) 17 Feb 03


A couple of Aussie songs. The first was recorded by Leslie Avril, and I'm guessing that one of the authors is Greg Champion, a Melbourne singer/songwriter.

WHEN BILLY CAME BACK (Burt/Champion)

When I knew Bill
he was an old man.
His head was high,
his heart was strong.
Remembrance Day,
I wore his medals.
He came back
to carry on.

Now Billy was a boy in 1914.
Grew up working the farm at Diamond Creek.
Rode his horse to school across the ranges.
Gave him memories his heart would keep.

And when the Lighthorse came to call,
no, he didn't have to think at all.

When billy came back
he was a young man.
His head was high,
his heart was strong.
There were the things
he never spoke of.
When Billy came back
to carry on.

Never mind the pain and hopeless slaughter.
Never mind the days that have no end.
Three years a'lookin' back across the water.
In a world of pain and death and men.

But the tale he would always tell,
was their pity as the horses fell.

When Billy came back
he was a young man.
His head was high,
his heart was strong.
From poison gas
his lungs were broken.
When Billy came back
to carry on.

Down amongst the dark and muddy trenches,
Billy wrote his letters to his home.
His mother kept them bound in silken ribbon
till the day when marching home he'd come.

He said "They put on quite a show,
but the truth I would never know".

When Billy came back
he was a young man.
His head was high,
his heart was strong.
There were the things
he never spoke of.
When Billy came back
to carry on.

But this could not destroy
the loving heart of a country boy.

When Billy came back
he was a young man.
His head was high,
his heart was strong.
From poison gas
his lungs were broken.
When Billy came back
to carry on.

When Billy came back
he was a young man.
His head was high,
his heart was strong.
There were the things
he never spoke of.
When Billy came back
to carry on.

The second song was written, I believe, not long after Eric Bogle's "Band Played ..." and gives the Turkish perspective of the landing at Anzac Cove. I've had these lyrics written down for a long time, but never wrote down the title, author or performer (although on the page its written on is the name Paul Hamphill). Any information greatly appreciated.

Allan

WATCHERS OF THE WATER?(P Hamphill?)

Sun's fiery furnace
beating on our backs
as we fixed our sharpened bayonets
and shouldered hidden packs.

We marched in ordered file
to destiny that day.
To a land God had forgotten
due east of Suvla Bay.

And in hills so rough and rugged,
we pulled our guns by hand.
Raised the shells upon our shoulders
to the heights we must command.

We watched and prayed and waited;
each heart beating like a drum.
we all had our eyes on the seaward horizon,
to west, where they would come.

And the cold moon she rose on
the watchers of the water.
The stars hung brightly
high above the trees.
And in the warm night tide
sheep came to the slaughter
from their land so
far away across the sea.

And when night fell, oh
she fell so soft and silent.
We could have been in the
garden of paradise.
And no man raised his voice,
not a soul made a noise,
though our blood ran
as cold, as cold, as ice.

And the cold moon she rose on
the watchers of the water.
The stars hung brightly
high above the trees.
And in the warm night tide
sheep came to the slaughter
from their land so
far away across the sea.

The cruel moon light
upon the water glistened,
and enrapt
in all of our hopes and fears.
And in the warm night tide
oh, we watched and listened,
with sharpened eyes
and very, very frightened ears.

And we saw small boats come sailing
from ships far out to sea.
And the shells came at us, playing
an infernal symphony.

And with fists of fire and steel
we were hammered that night.
And many great men went to God
without a chance to fight.
And as the boats drew nearer, oh
we watched with baited breath,
and we waited for the order
at our turn to deal with death.

And the cold moon she rose on
the watchers of the water.
The stars hung brightly
high above the trees.
And in the warm night tide
sheep came to the slaughter
from their land so
far away across the sea.

From their land so far away across the sea!


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