Song: THE LISTENERS (Walter de la Mare)





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Uploaded on Dec 31, 2009

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THE LYRICS OF THIS SONG are in fact a famous poem by Walter de la Mare (1873-1956). Ever since I bumped into that poem I have always thought that it is one of the best English ballads ever written, so I wrote the music to it and recorded it on my BR 1200 digital recording studio, singing & playing the instruments myself (except the BR 1200 drum machine, which I simply had to program accordingly).

Mille grazie to Daniele Montella - illustrator & concept artist at www.dan-ka.com - who allowed me to use his fantastic image "The Haunted House".


'Is there anybody there?' said the Traveller
Knocking on the moonlit door
And his horse in the silence champed the grasses
Of the forest's ferny floor
And a bird flew up out of the turret
Above the Traveller's head
And he smote upon the door again a second time
'Is there anybody there?' he said.

But no one descended to the Traveller
No head from the leaf-fringed sill
Leaned over and looked into his grey eyes
Where he stood perplexed and still.
But only a host of phantom listeners
That dwelt in the lone house then
Stood listening in the quiet of the moonlight
To that voice from the world of men:

Stood thronging the faint moonbeams on the dark stair
That goes down to the empty hall
Hearkening in an air stirred and shaken
By the lonely Traveller's call.
And he felt in his heart their strangeness
Their stillness answering his cry
While his horse moved, cropping the dark turf
'Neath the starred and leafy sky;

For he suddenly smote on the door, even
Louder, and lifted his head:-
'Tell them I came, and no one answered
That I kept my word,' he said.
Never the least stir made the listeners
Though every word he spake
Fell echoing through the shadowiness of the still house
From the one man left awake:

Ay, they heard his foot upon the stirrup
And the sound of iron on stone
And how the silence surged softly backward
When the plunging hoofs were gone
© 2008-2011 for the song: Bernd Wahlbrinck

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