Until Next Year

“So fold thyself, my dearest, then, and slip/Into my bosom and be lost in me.”–Tennyson, “Songs from The Princess”

He stands in a lane of an October night
Dark leaves blowin’ at his feet
His breath hangs white on the frosted air
As he keeps his vigil in the sleet

The light from her window glowin’ soft and warm
A long ago memory in the mist
An embrace recollected in the shadows
The closeness of a hand being kissed

Is my true love sleeping?
Does she think of me still
As I wait for the first lights of dawn?
Does she know I’ve been waiting
For her signal to return?
Will my true love know when I am gone?

He hesitates a moment by the street-corner lamp
And trembles, thoughts of touches he had known
Memories swell within his restless heart
With an ache that he’d never outgrown

Chorus: repeats

He stepped toward her window and he whispered her name
The shelter and her comfort, oh so near
He listened in vain to the echoes of the wind
And crept away again until next year…

Chorus: repeats


With a nod to A.E. Housman, early Simon & Garfunkle, and Gabriel’s wife’s young lover in Joyce’s “The Dead”. Romantic roles and scripts are fairly common and some are more interesting than others. When one is in/to a role, the imagery usually follows as it does in this song. There are ‘the things to do’ and they, of course, make perfect sense. I guess it’s fair to say that for some the roles are very real, genuine, and deeply felt, and that some never quite move on or recover from scenes of the past.

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